Foreclosure Research

Woodstock Institute identifies trends and impacts of the foreclosure crisis and works to limit foreclosures’ negative effects on communities.

November 8, 2011
November 8, 2011     The Interfaith Housing Center of the Northern Suburbs recently was awarded a $52,500 grant to notify homeowners in foreclosure in the North Suburbs of free help that is available.   The center is hiring two people to begin this month contacting homeowners who already have...
November 3, 2011
By Megan Cottrell November 3, 2011     In late July, the Chicago City Council passed an ordinance designed to clean up the thousands of vacant properties left decaying in the wake of foreclosure crisis. That ordinance would hold lender and mortgage servicers accountable for the maintenance of...
November 3, 2011
By Mary Morrison November 3, 2011     The Chicago-area homeownership rate edged lower in the third quarter, a trend likely to continue as more people lose their homes to foreclosure and others either can’t get a mortgage or are afraid of buying.   The percentage of local homes occupied by their...
November 2, 2011
By Amy Biegelsen November 2, 2011   Raccoon infestations. Squatters. Fires. Drug dealers.   Second Ward Chicago Alderman Robert Fioretti has a lot of headaches thanks to vacant properties in his district. The foreclosure crisis has only compounded them.   The thing that really gets Fioretti,...
November 1, 2011
By Angela Caputo November 1, 2011   When Stephen Henry moved back to Roseland in 2009 to pastor the church he’d grown up attending, one of the first things he did was size up the neighborhood. The technology consultant-turned-pastor hadn’t lived there in more than two decades after moving to...
October 25, 2011
By Mary Morrison October 25, 2011   A federal program to modify delinquent home loans is helping more struggling local homeowners than it did last year but still not enough, according to local housing advocates.   More than 35,700 Chicago-area home loans were modified permanently through the...
October 25, 2011
By Kyle Clapham October 25, 2011 At first glance, recent data suggests dramatic improvement in Chicago-area foreclosures.   In the six counties that comprise the region, there were 8,515 foreclosure auctions in the first half of 2011, a 51 percent drop from 17,331 during the first half of 2010,...
October 20, 2011
By Kerry Curry October 20, 2011 Poverty rates rose to 15.3% in 2010 from 14.3% 2009 as the nation's economic malaise and housing crisis persist, according to Census Bureau data released Thursday.   Some 3.3 million more people were living in poverty in 2010 than in 2009 — or 46.2 million people...
October 19, 2011
By David Unger October 19, 2011   At a Chicago city council committee meeting Monday, Ald. James Balcer (11th) raised a seemingly simple question. The topic was proposed changes to the city’s vacant property ordinance.   “If you’re in foreclosure,” he asked, “up until the bank takes possession,...
October 3, 2011
By James O'Shea and Bridget O'Shea October 3, 2011     In November 2004, Wanda Carter bought a home at 6548 South Morgan Street on the South Side and thought she got a good deal.   A bank lent her $142,000, which covered the sale price and loan fees, and provided $20,000 to fix up the place. To...
September 30, 2011
By Jennifer T. Lacey September 30, 2011 When the property at 4845 W. Van Buren St., went into foreclosure this year, it became one more address on a growing list of abandoned properties in Austin.   With its crumbling facade, the two-flat sits on a well-shaded, quiet street among vacant lots and...
September 23, 2011
By Kerry Curry September 23, 2011   Foreclosure cases are taking longer to complete in Chicago while auctions are decreasing, according to data released this week from the Woodstock Institute.   The result is a 51% drop in foreclosure completions during the first six months of this year compared...
September 22, 2011
By Michell Eloy September 22, 2011   A new study says Chicago-area foreclosure cases are taking longer to process.   The data, compiled by Woodstock Institute, says the median time for a house to complete foreclosure in the second quarter of 2011 was 359 days. That’s up 25 percent compared to the...
September 22, 2011
By Mary Ellen Podmolik September 22, 2011     More than three years into the housing crisis, the foreclosure process isn't speeding up. It's slowing down.   In Cook County during this year's second quarter, it took a median 363 days to move a foreclosure case through the court system. The median is...
September 22, 2011
By Mary Morrison September 22, 2011   The number of Chicago-area foreclosure completions dropped significantly in the first half of this year, but only because of delays in the process.   The six-county Chicago region saw 8,515 foreclosure cases completed at auction in the first half of 2011, a 50...
September 16, 2011
By Cynthia Bowers September 15, 2011   Many of the foreclosed, bank-owned homes across the country are being left to rot, creating "foreclosure ghettos" that are driving down nearby property values. Cynthia Bowers reports residents of Chicago's South Side are fed up.   Watch the video
September 15, 2011
By Rob Garver September 15, 2011   Of the many financial reforms in Dodd-Frank, a requirement that lenders retain a share of the risk in mortgages they sell to investors seemed like a no-brainer. If lenders were on the hook, too, the thinking went, they would tighten standards and avoid the kind of...
September 13, 2011
By Liz Enochs September 8, 2011   President Obama Thursday outlined a plan to stimulate the U.S. economy and revitalize the job market through a combination of spending and tax cuts.   The proposal, which various news reports calculated could cost anywhere from $300 billion to $447 billion, would...
September 7, 2011

 
With home values continuing a steep decline, little change in the unemployment rate, and 26 percent of Illinoisans owing more than their home is worth, little has been done to buoy confidence that an economic recovery is at hand. A settlement of the investigations surrounding last year’s robo-signing scandal that, among other things, achieves widespread principal reduction commitments from major servicers, could change that–but only if done carefully.
 

August 30, 2011
By Mark Bergen August 30, 2011   The city took another small step in its attempt to tackle the ongoing foreclosure crisis today.   The City Council's housing committee signed off on the latest city plan to implement the federal Neighborhood Stabilization Program, but not before aldermen voiced a...
August 28, 2011
By James Fuller August 28, 2011   Christine Winter lives on an upscale block just outside of St. Charles, but you wouldn't know it by looking out her window. She shares a view many suburban residents count as part of their landscapes — thanks to the thousands of homes left vacant when the housing...
August 18, 2011
By Leah Hope August 18, 2011   With the number of foreclosures rising at an alarming rate, the City of Chicago is taking steps to preserve neighborhoods and keep people in their homes.   On Wednesday, Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced millions of dollars to help troubled homeowners. The city also...
August 11, 2011
By Curtis Black August 11, 2011     A Lawndale activist who was arrested Tuesday while calling on Bank of America to follow the law – and fix code violations in foreclosed properties – has posted her comments at Action Now’s blog.   “I was in shock,” says Marsha Godard, 52, a mother and a Bank of...
August 3, 2011
By Dennis Rodkin August 3, 2011   Last Thursday, the Chicago City Council passed a vacant building ordinance designed to get mortgage lenders with a financial stake in vacant foreclosed properties to help keep them from falling into disrepair.   Four days later, Moody’s Investors Service issued a...
August 2, 2011
By Mary E. Morrison August 2, 2011 The foreclosure crisis is far from over, but fewer homes in the Chicago area are sitting empty, a welcome if only temporary sign for the battered local housing market.   The Chicago-area home vacancy rate dropped to 3.6% in the second quarter, down from 4.3% in...
July 20, 2011
By Jacob Gaffney July 20, 2011 Political deadlock mixed with terrible housing market conditions will eventually turn America into a society of renters, according to the latest Housing Market Insights report from Morgan Stanley (MS: 21.72 +3.53%).   High rates of mortgage delinquency, foreclosures...
July 20, 2011
By Dennis Rodkin July 20, 2011   Some Chicago-area homeowners at risk of foreclosure may get the lifeline they need from the new $100 million Mortgage Resolution Fund, announced by Governor Quinn this past Friday.   “We’re going upstream to stop further houses from becoming vacant,” says Bill...
July 20, 2011
By Michelle Manchir July 20, 2011   Rep. Emily McAsey, a Lockport Democrat who represents the Bolingbrook area in the Illinois General Assembly, urged homeowners struggling with foreclosures to seek assistance from legitimate sources and avoid scams.   The message came at a town hall meeting...
July 13, 2011
By Sylvia Puente July 13, 2011 “Prices are low! Mortgages are cheap!”   The headline from a recent report from CNN Money enticed would-be homeowners. However, as the headline concluded, reality set in:   “But you can’t get one.”   While times are tough for homeowners from all walks of life,...
July 8, 2011
By Bridget O'Shea and James O'Shea July 8, 2011   Although it never shared the notoriety of Miami, Los Angeles and Phoenix during America’s foreclosure crisis, the Chicago area now has the nation’s largest inventory of foreclosed homes because it is harder to unload troubled properties here than in...

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