Calculating the city's share of foreclosure costs

September 21, 2011

Produced by Eight Forty-Eight

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(Flickr/Ted Guarnero)
Many homeowners in Chicago have suffered under the foreclosure crisis, but what is the cost for the city as a whole?

Chicago was hit hard by the foreclosure crisis and it appeared the problem was unlikely to go away soon. Over the summer, foreclosure filings picked up their pace. In many cases that meant more vacant houses and condos on the block; and with nobody home, houses can decay or even provide shelter for illegal activities. The city undertook various efforts to improve the situation – from buying and rehabbing properties to making banks responsible for abandoned houses.

The cost of a foreclosure to a homeowner or neighbor might seem obvious - but Eight Forty-Eight wondered what toll foreclosures took on the city overall. To find out more, Evan McKenzie, associate professor of political science at the University of Illinois at Chicago, joined the program.

Music Button: Steve Reich, "2x5-Slow", from the album Double Sextet 2x5, (Nonesuch)