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Date July, 2009
Client PolicyLink
Length 70 pages

ONLINE INTERACTIVE TOOL

Reclaiming Foreclosed Properties

for Community Benefit

May 8 helps to bring information to municipalities and states on successful foreclosure recovery strategies. Communities across the country are facing the negative impact of the foreclosure crisis as vacant properties increase and property values plummet. This PolicyLink report, Reclaiming Foreclosed Properties for Community Benefit, highlights promising practices that are already underway for localities looking to stabilize their local housing market and prevent blight from spreading. With more than five million mortgages in some stage of foreclosure and more than 15 million Americans “underwater” with homes worth less than they owe on their mortgage, the foreclosure crisis remains a very real threat to countless communities.

The report provides a framework for developing a comprehensive foreclosure recovery plan and showcases the most innovative and promising strategies for the acquisition, maintenance, management, and transfer of these properties to low-income renters and homeowners, or for other beneficial neighborhood use. Communities can use this information to develop effective foreclosure recovery plans. The report also provides detailed case studies of four successful approaches being taken by states and municipalities in Cleveland, Los Angeles, Minnesota, and Rhode Island.

The Getting Started section begins by laying out the key steps to creating a custom made foreclosure recovery plan for a municipality. Then acquisition, disposition and stewardship strategies are discussed in detail. A chart guides municipalities through the decision as to which strategies are likely to work in their type of market. The publication ends with a detailed discussion of the challenges and factors for success bringing foreclosed properties back into viable use and a series of resources are provided to help non-profits and governments locate available resources for financial support, data collection and mapping.