Cleaning Out and Keeping Up Foreclosures

As foreclosures spread throughout California's Inland Empire, empty homes need to be cleaned and maintained. To meet the demand, an industry is rapidly expanding.

"Just over an hour after they had arrived, they were done: the yard was clean, the house cleared, the "after" pictures taken. The men, members of a "trash out" crew charged with hauling away what's left in foreclosed houses, had removed any sign of a home life from this one in Murrieta Oaks."

"Mr. Brewer and his colleagues work for WSR Sales and Management, a real estate company based in nearby Riverside that has been around for 27 years, but has lately reinvented itself as a specialist in "home preservation" - the process of cleaning, securing and maintaining foreclosed properties for banks that begins with the process referred to as trashing out."

"In the three years since the mortgage crisis began in the Riverside area, the company has expanded its preservation unit from 2 people to 60, and Mr. Plocher now oversees five trash-out crews that work 10 hours a day, 6 days a week, along with another 23 crews that perform regular landscaping and maid services for roughly a thousand houses that have already been cleaned out and put on the market."

Full Story: Foreclosure Trash-Out: Ill Fortune and Its Leavings

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