Vacant Properties

Vacant and foreclosed properties exact potentially destabilizing costs on entire neighborhoods and communities by lowering property values, raising crime rates, and straining municipal resources. 
 
High concentrations of vacant and foreclosed properties are clearly a problem in the Chicago region. Completed foreclosure auctions, which result in the lender gaining ownership of a property, increased in the region by 227 percent between 2006 and 2009. Demand for these homes, despite state and federal interventions designed to encourage home purchases, remains low.
 
New models must be developed to allow families to stay in their homes, perhaps as renters, so that communities remain stable, valuable housing stock is preserved, and municipalities and servicers do not have the added liability of maintaining and securing vacant property. Municipalities need more tools for purchasing, maintaining, and returning the recent influx of vacant and foreclosed properties to productive use. 
 
This page details the efforts of the Regional Home Ownership Preservation Initiative (RHOPI) vacant and foreclosed properties task force to lead municipalities on maximizing the impact of limited vacant property resources; promote cross-jurisdictional collaboration, land banking, and regional strategy; and position the region for success in obtaining federal, state, and local resources to stabilize neighborhoods and mitigate the effects of vacant properties on communities.
 
 

Since the housing crisis began, many for-sale single-family homes (SFHs) in the region have become rental units or are now vacant.  This has diverse implications for how the region’s communities recover from the housing crisis and manage a housing stock that has traditionally been owner-occupied.  Recent data from the American Community Survey (ACS), which provides a rolling...

The Fourth Quarter 2012 IHS Cook County House Price Index reflects house price changes on properties with repeat sales from the first quarter of 1997 through the fourth quarter of 2012. The IHS House Price Index tracks quarterly price changes for the four primary residential property types found in the County: single family homes, condominium units, small rental buildings with two to four...


 
The Lawyers' Committee for Better Housing releases the Tenants in Foreclosure Intervention Project 2012 report.
 
LCBH has been compiling foreclosure data since 2009, and found that in 2012 the City of Chicago experienced the smallest year-to-year decrease in apartment...


 
Enhanced data collection by municipalities in the Chicago six county region will help the region address the problem of vacant buildings, a new report by Woodstock Institute found.

The report, ...

The Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) is pleased to request applications for the Abandoned Properties Program (APP).  Under this program, IHDA will make grants to municipalities and counties for the maintenance or demolition of abandoned residential properties within their jurisdiction. Funds will be distributed throughout the state geographically as determined by the enabling...


Written to inform the development of the City's forthcoming 2014-2018 Five Year Housing Plan, the Overview of the Chicago Housing Market contains a comprehensive set of maps, charts, and tables meant to both provide background data for the city's housing plan and a comprehensive view of...

The Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) recently announced an important new resource for municipalities looking to reduce the negative impacts of vacant residential buildings on their communities. Municipalities and counties can apply for up to $75,000 from the Abandoned Property Program to secure, maintain, demolish, or rehabilitate vacant homes. Applications are due by 3pm CST on...

Good afternoon. I am honored to have been asked to share a few thoughts on the current housing and economic challenges faced by many of America’s families and communities. Since the collapse of the housing market and onset of the foreclosure crisis, the idea of and public policies to support homeownership have been under attack.
 
Six years into the crisis, the...

Vacant homes are posing obstacles to recovery for communities throughout the Chicago region and beyond. With more than 360,000 foreclosures filed in the Chicago region in the past five years, it is clear that the scale of...


A new Woodstock Institute report examines the extent to which servicers are walking away from foreclosures in Cook County, Illinois, creating zombie properties, and how that practice...

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