“Hidden Costs” of the Foreclosure Crisis

Although we see the foreclosure activity may be declining, the problem is far from over! There have been 5 million foreclosures since 2007, reports the Center for Responsible Lending, which estimates that between 3 million and 5 million more will occur over the next couple of years nationwide.  

Some of the consequences of foreclosures are obvious: family displacements, crime in vacant properties, ruined credit, and the loss of equity. Other, less obvious consequences have emerged as well. About 8 million children could be affected, including kids of home owners and renters who were evicted due to a foreclosure. Julia Isaacs of the Brookings Institution calls these children the “invisible victims” of the foreclosure crisis, as foreclosures not only can cause emotional trauma, but also interfere with a child’s educational development.

Researchers also have found a connection between rising foreclosures and an increase in medical visits for mental health, such as anxiety, or preventable conditions such as high blood pressure. Plus, let’s don’t forget possible job related problems. 

Our region is strapped because of a loss of property tax revenue caused by foreclosures, which can lead to cuts in services — including fire protection, senior centers, and local law enforcement. Please provide comments about your local market contitions. 

Source: “Three Hidden Costs of the Foreclosure Crisis,” MarketWatch (4/ 24/12)