Jennifer Washco

The Community and Neighborhood Impacts of Local Foreclosure Responses

A Case Study of Cuyahoga County, Ohio

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Kurzfassung in Englisch

The U.S.-American foreclosure crisis and related economic crises have had severe and wide-reaching effects for the global economy, homeowners, and municipalities alike. These negative changes led to federal, state, regional, and local responses intended to prevent and mitigate foreclosures. As of yet, no research has examined the community- and neighborhood-level impacts of local foreclosure responses. This research seeks to determine the economic, physical, social, and political changes that resulted from these responses.

A mixed methods case study of Cuyahoga County, Ohio, home to Cleveland, was used to identify local level foreclosure responses—i.e. those carried out at the county level and below—and their effects. The qualitative component was comprised of semi-structured stakeholder interviews, including local governmental representatives, advocacy groups, and neighborhood representatives. Two community subcases were investigated in depth to further examine the mechanisms and effects of foreclosure responses.

The quantitative component supplements the qualitative component by means of a quantile regression model that examines relationships between foreclosure responses and changes in property value at the Census tract level, used to approximate communities. The model integrates data for the entire county and estimates coefficients at various quantiles of the dependent variable, which uncovers variations in the associations between the variables along the dependent variable’s distribution. That is, with quantile regression it is possible to determine whether foreclosure responses have different effects depending on community conditions.

The results indicate that the national and local context are of particular importance when responding to the foreclosure crisis. Lackluster national level responses necessitated creative and innovative responses at the local level. The Cleveland region is characterized a weak housing market and its concomitant vacancy and abandonment problems. Thus, post-foreclosure responses that deal with blighted property are essential.

A wide variety of foreclosure responses took place in Cuyahoga County, in the form of systems reform, foreclosure prevention, targeting, property acquisition and control, legal efforts, and community- and neighborhood-level efforts. Several strategies used in these responses emerged as themes: targeting, addressing blight, strengthening the social fabric, planning for the future, building institutions and organizational capacity, and advocacy. Physical and economic impacts are closely linked and are brought about especially by responses using targeting and blight reduction strategies. Social impacts, such as increased identification with, investment in, and commitment to the community occurred as the result of responses that used the strategies of strengthening the social fabric and planning a shared future for the community. Finally, the strategies of building institutions and organizational capacity and advocacy resulted in increased political power in the form of more local control and additional resources for neighborhoods and communities.

These results provide deeper insight into the effects of the foreclosure crisis and local responses to it on neighborhoods and communities. This case study identifies the importance of targeting, blight removal, strengthening social bonds, planning for a shared future, increasing organizational capacity, and advocacy in addressing the foreclosure crisis on the community and neighborhood levels, especially in weak housing market cities where need far outstrips the available resources.

weitere Metadaten

Foreclosure, Neighborhood Change, Quantile Regression
DDC Klassifikation711
RVK KlassifikationRU 30906
HochschuleTechnische Universität Dresden
FakultätFakultät Umweltwissenschaften
BetreuerProf. Dr. Bernhard Müller
Prof. Hazel Morrow-Jones
GutachterProf. Dr. Georg Hirte
Tag d. Einreichung (bei der Fakultät)23.06.2015
Tag d. Verteidigung / Kolloquiums / Prüfung23.03.2016
Veröffentlichungsdatum (online)01.09.2016
persistente URNurn:nbn:de:bsz:14-qucosa-208403

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