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How do i go about getting an abandoned vehicle?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by OneFineComet, Jul 19, 2012.

  1. A while back i posted about a 49 Plymouth sitting on a property near my house. From the little info i have gotten from neighbors the property hasnt been occupied since 2003 when the tennant was evacuated because of a fire. The tennant was the son of the property owner who has since Pased away and now the sons sister (original owners daughter) owns the house on the property. The house is in shambles. Weeds and trees everywhere (including a few that have fallen on the house) and about 5 cars and a trailer in the front yard. Would contacting the property owner be the best way to go about this? Or is there anything else i can do legally?
  2. Don's Hot Rods
    Joined: Oct 7, 2005
    Posts: 8,319

    Don's Hot Rods
    from florida

    Contacting the owner is the only way IMO. There have been stories of someone who restored a car they got with no title and one day a roll back shows up with the cops so the original owner could reclaim his car.

    If it is on private property it isn't abandoned.

  3. Thats what i figured. I have a friend in real estate and ill see if he can do a property owner search for me.
  4. This is my conjecture, if the property owner and the tenant are closely related than the cars may not be abandoned at all.

    Your best bet is to contact the property owner and ask. being a close relative of the "abandoned" property unless there is bad blood there the property owner is probably going to say that she doesn't know and she will get back to you.

    Or you could just steal the "abandoned" property.

    I picked up an abandoned bike in a state park one time to use to built a flat tracker. I had it home cleaned up and dissaembled when the owner of the "abandoned/stolen" bike showed up at my door. All pissy and gonna whup me and the like. I laughed at him and said hey I found your bike for ya. Then helped him load it in his pickup, and asked if there wasn't a reward. :D

  5. Balls Out Garage
    Joined: Dec 8, 2008
    Posts: 107

    Balls Out Garage
    from Arkansas

    Whether you think the cars are abandoned or not, the best thing is always to contact the owner. I've done so in the past, and quickly found that a cars owner certainly didn't consider it abandoned. That being said, other options might come into play if the local government declared either the cars or property to be a nuisance.
  6. It hasnt been "Abandoned" yet but i wont take further action until i talk to the property owner. As far as i know the owner lives in Nevada and the owner of the cars lives in the California desert.

    From the neighbors i talked to the would love the property cleaned up.
  7. greaseyknight
    Joined: Sep 27, 2010
    Posts: 225

    from Burley WA

    No need to talk to a realtor, most county treasurer/tax assessors have all that info on their website, and you can search by name or look at a map to identify the property.
  8. carcruse
    Joined: Aug 20, 2007
    Posts: 885


  9. Some Punk
    Joined: Jul 19, 2012
    Posts: 18

    Some Punk

    There has to be some type of public record of the person, then a short online search can lead you to getting the contact info of the person that now has ownership of the belongings on/in the estate. Just say you're interested in said vehicle(s) and was wondering if you could take it to help "clean up" the property, or offer its weight in scrap. I don't see anyone saying No to some money they didn't know they had sitting in a field.
  10. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 9,608

    Rusty O'Toole

    Speak to the property tax people first. They can give you the owner's name and the legal description of the property. You need the legal description if you have to look the place up at the courthouse (Hall of Records, Registry Office, whatever they call it where you are).

    Tax records are public records. They can't keep them secret. Usually they will answer questions over the phone but sometimes you have to go to the Town Hall and look in the book.
  11. rcoffey
    Joined: Dec 13, 2007
    Posts: 161


    I work out of state alot.So right now my property is "abandoned" and will be for the next year & a half and my yard needs mowed as I type this .If I do come home to check on MY STUFF and its gone I garantee you I will be pissed!
    Joey12692 likes this.
  12. I found a 39 Chevy two-door sedan in a barn in North Dakota when I was stationed there in the military. When I'm driving in the country, I drive slow if time permits and try to catch glimpses of whatever's in old barns, etc.

    This barn was pretty close to the road and in serious disrepair and the property was also overgrown, but passing by one day, I thought I caught the glint of a headlight through a partially open door.

    Up there, you could see for miles in any direction, so I chanced it and peeked into the barn and sure enough....there was a really dusty, but very solid 39 tudor.

    I did the right thing and left the property, then spent the better part of two weeks tracking down the ancient old farmer with a thick Norwegian him on the phone....asked him when he'd be out at the property again and agreed to meet him there.

    He sold me the car....for a disgustingly small amount of money and actually thanked me for going through the proper channels to inquire about the car.

    So yes....always find the owner....always. If the car is on private property and you can't....leave it alone.

    (Interestingly enough, the only question the old guy had for me was, "why the hell would you want a damned old car like that for?")
  13. Roger Walling
    Joined: Sep 26, 2010
    Posts: 1,149

    Roger Walling

    I would contact the property owner (the sister) and ask her if she would contact her brother to find out if he would want to sell it. (Probaly the quickest and cheapest way)

    If he said no, the sister could have the car declaired abondoned by the city officials and have the car (c) towed and put up for sale.

    At that time though you would have to pay for the storage at the towers lot which could be up to $30-$40 per day for the time it takes for all the legal notices to take their course. Maybe 3 to 6 Months'

    Or maybe it is posible for the sister to claim them, and then sell it to you. (She may be more motivated to do that)
  14. For many years in Arkansas the law did not recognize feral or wild pigs. Pigs are not native to Arkansas and a wild pig had to be an escaped pig or the descendent of an escaped pig and therefore the property of someone or someone's descendent. That law has been changed but the common law concept that it was based is still foundation of American property laws. Everything belongs to some one and ownership can only be transferred by deed, gift, sale, will or court proceeding. Anything else is theft.
  15. cseay1949
    Joined: Jul 18, 2012
    Posts: 18

    from Elkwood VA

    In Virginia, if someone abandons a vehicle on your property there is a process by which you can get a clear and free title to the vehicle in your name. The idea behind this is that possession is 9/10 of the law. When you start the process, the DMV will send out a letter to the last registered name and/or lien holder(s) to that vehicle's VIN number. If they don't come forward after X number of days to claim it, then you can legally title it in your name.

    Now if the vehicle was on someone else's property, that's a different story. If the property owner wanted to get rid of or sell the vehicle, the legal thing they should do is get a title through the abandoned vehicle process first themselves, then they can legally sign the title over to you. However, if they just tell you to take it or sell it to you, and you go through the process and title it as if it was abandoned on your property, once it's done it's done - the original owners had their chance to claim it, and the folks whose property it was on had some right to dispose of the vehicle as they had possession of it.
  16. Sphynx
    Joined: Jan 31, 2009
    Posts: 1,142

    from Central Fl

    Contact the property appraser in your area. I work law enforcement and thats how we get in touch with people about who owns a piece of property or its contents. Also they are usually real fast at getting the information and its public knowledge so yoir not doing anything wrong.
  17. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 30,185


    Yep as the guys said previously go through the proper channels.

    Since you have probably snooped the car you might already know if there is a registration slip with a name or other paper work with a name on it like an insurance card. Something you can do a search on and maybe find the actual owner or who ever now has legal claim to the vehicle. You might end up making a half dozen phone calls on wild goose chases before finding the right person if they have a fairly common name though. Just google your own name and see how many pop up in the US and how many have the same middle initial and you will see how much of a challenge you might be up against.
  18. Contact the property owner, offer to remove all the cars in exchange for the Plymouth and split the proceeds on the rest with them.
  19. cseay1949
    Joined: Jul 18, 2012
    Posts: 18

    from Elkwood VA

    I do have a couple stories that I can relay of friends experiences with finding "abandoned" cars ..

    Story #1: A Dozen '49-'51 Mercs in the Woods. A friend of mine worked for the state building roads. Being a fellow hot rodder/picker/packrat/junk collector, whenever he would be working in a new area that had been overgrown and undisturbed for a long time he would do a little exploring, looking for abandoned barns full of treasure or other relics. One project had him building a new road through a section of woods. Not far from the new road, in a clearing in the middle of the woods, he stumbled across a dozen 1949 1950 and 1951 Mercurys. This wooded property had no buildings on it, it was land-locked by a new subdivision, a fairly new shopping center, and the new road. Some two doors, some four doors, some bone stock unmolested original, and some were customs that were chopped and/or sectioned and looked like they had been done in the late 50's or 60's. I think the newest license plate on any of the cars was 1972. Needless to say, my buddy went back with his camera and took lots of pictures, which he shared with anyone and everyone who would listen at the next Saturday night cruise-in. Not the next Saturday, but the one after that, the guy WHO OWNS THE ABANDONED MERCS shows up at the cruise night, tracks down my buddy, and confronts him. "So, I hear you have been trespassing on my property, and telling everyone you're going to steal my cars." My friend turned white as a sheet and his jaw dropped to the floor. Everyone within earshot who had been talking and b.s.'ing all the sudden stopped and turned around. I don't remember the rest of the words exchanged but it ended up with the guy saying "If I ever see you or hear that you were on my property again, I'm going to f-ing hunt you down and kill you."
  20. cseay1949
    Joined: Jul 18, 2012
    Posts: 18

    from Elkwood VA

    Story #2: Nearly 30 Desirable Muscle Cars on the Farm. Another friend of mine had heard through relations that there were a bunch of old cars on a farm not far from his house. Aparently, at one time this was a huge farm of several hundred acres. After the farmer and his wife past away, the farm was subdivided into lots that were given to the children. One of the sons, took his share of the inheritance money and bought nearly 30 desirable muscle cars .. first gen camaros, some SS and RS, a few big block four speed cars, Impala SS, almost every year Chevelle some SS, Novas, Trans-Ams, GTO's, a Vega or two, and an oddball lone non-GM AMX. These cars were all around what used to be the farms shop building, that still had some tractors and implements and one of the Camaros inside sans engine. My buddy went to the nearest house which belong to one of the sisters. She said that lots of people had asked about the cars over the years, but her brother wasn't interested in selling. Aparently he bought all of these cars around 1980 when the cars were only 10-15 year old used cars, piddled with them for a little bit, then got married and moved out of state. Reluctantly, she gave my friend her brother's number. So my friend called, and the guy was not real pleasant. Now my friend had a good job in the construction trade and this was during the boom, so my buddy had cash to blow. He started offering the guy rediculous numbers for some of these cars, but the guy wasn't interested. My friend tried to reason with him, saying that these were valuable cars just going to rot, when the guy cut him off and said "now you're really starting to irritate me .. those are my cars, and they can rot into the ground or turn into trees, they are MY cars and they are NOT for sale. I'm going to hang up now, and after I do I am calling my sister, and having her report you to the sheriff's department for trespassing."
  21. power wagon
    Joined: Jul 17, 2012
    Posts: 117

    power wagon

    my advice is act fast on it, up here anything thats not bolted down finds it way to the scrap yard
  22. Didnt do any snooping in the cars but i dod walk around the property a bit to check out the condition of the other cars and trucks there. i got a few pics pf whats out there.
  23. Here are some of the pics of whats out there.

    Attached Files:

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