What Happens if I Don’t Opt-in or Clean Up My Property
We sincerely hope the fire cleanup process has gone smoothly for those who lost structures in the 2020 wildfire season. We’ve had a few questions regarding what happens if you do nothing? We have experience with property owners who elected to do this in the past. Our short answer is … we don’t recommend it!
Based upon past projects we’ve seen, the municipality overseeing the clean-up process (typically the local county health department) will start sending letters to property owners who’ve not done anything and not given any indication of how/if they intend to clean-up the property. From there they’ll begin to threaten you with liens, if not actually file liens on your property.
One way or another, they’re going to clean up the property and they’re going to attempt to utilize the value of the property to obtain payment for the cost. The steps they take to collect payment may vary, but property owners who don’t have insurance coverage, or who feel their property is now worthless, have the option of opting-in and simply allowing the state to clean the property. We understand there’s paperwork involved and a process that no one truly wants to participate in but ignoring it will cost you headaches and money in the end.
Please see the resources on our website if you have questions. You’re always welcome to e-mail or call and we’ll do what we can to help.
Find information on northern California wildfires here: https://www.guziwest.com/fire/information
Information on opting-in or out here: https://www.guziwest.com/learn/more/opting-in-opting-out-fire-cleanup-california
Why we recommend opting-in for these fires: https://www.guziwest.com/learn/more/opt-in-federal-programs-for-fire-cleanup-california