Sometimes, landlords will buy foreclosed or distressed properties at auction for far lower prices than their true value. They may intend to fix it up to flip it or to make it into multiple tenant units.
But somewhere between that gavel falling and now, your efforts to refurbish and/or repurpose the property ran out of steam (or money). For now, the property sits unoccupied and as-is, or with only partial repairs done. But are you sure that it is really unoccupied?
Beware of squatters on your Queens property
Here in New York, a squatter who has been living on someone else’s property for at least 30 days is considered to legally be a tenant. What that means for landlords is they must then legally evict these unwanted residents from the property to get rid of them.
Because this can happen quickly, it behooves all property owners (or their agents) to visit their vacant properties at least weekly. This allows you to make sure that nobody has set up housekeeping without your consent on the property. This is one of those situations where prevention is much simpler (and cheaper) than the cure.
What to do if you already have squatters
If you own enough property here in New York City, eventually you will have to deal with the problem of squatters. Time is definitely not on your side when it comes to squatting. Wait too long to address the situation and it becomes the much more serious problem of adverse possession. Seek the guidance you need to protect yourself and your property from squatters.