Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Foreclosure Rates High in Some Areas of Pgh

While Pittsburgh’s rate of foreclosure remains below the national average, several neighborhoods in the city weren’t so lucky.

University of Pittsburgh researchers compiled foreclosure data for city neighborhoods and found several communities, especially in the south and west of the city, had high rates. For example, Sheraden’s 2008-2009 foreclosure rate of 22% was the city’s highest, at about 30 times the Pennsylvania rate of 0.7%.

Pitt assistant professor Sabina Deitrick says the data she compiled should be useful for those trying to fight foreclosures.

“There’s lots of groups across the country who are working in similar kinds of neighborhoods and finding homeowners before foreclosures finish,” says Deitrick. “There’s groups here in Pittsburgh, like the Pittsburgh Community Reinvestment Group, that are doing those kinds of things. This is information to help them in identifying some areas when working with others, particularly with funders or foundations or financial institutions.”

Deitrick says often these foreclosed houses become property of financial institutions. She says since these companies want to get rid of these properties as quickly as possible, they’re often undersold or they stand vacant. Deitrick says this has happened most often in Beechview, where financial groups owned 29 properties.

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