The Federal Reserve and Massachusetts Housing Partnership said that Brockton is the city with the highest number of bank foreclosed homes for sale in the state last month.
According to market data, about 34,794 properties in the city were in some kind of foreclosure process. These figures include apartment units. The July numbers represented a 1 percent drop since October 2008.
Janine Carreiro of the Brockton Interfaith Community said that she is not surprised over the report that Brockton has the highest number of foreclosure properties in the state. She said that out of 1,000 houses in the city, 43.8 are distressed properties or in some kind of foreclosure proceeding. City zip codes with highest repossession rates are 02 and 02301.
Mayor James E. Harrington said that the high foreclosure rate in the city is the reason why the local government applied for federal funds.
Industry analysts said that homeowners go into foreclosures because of deceptive or predatory lending and unemployment. They said that federal initiatives aimed at alleviating the effects of foreclosure have just recently obtained by the city, with some still coming.
But analysts pointed out that a bulk of the funding is allocated to helping neighborhoods severely affected by foreclosures and not on helping distressed homeowners avoid foreclosures and remain in their houses.
Building a Better Brockton Corp. Chief Executive Officer and President Donald Walsh said that the number of foreclosure properties is highest in the city because of the volume of subprime loan deals, rising unemployment and lack of preparedness. He added that part of the city's problem is the absence of organizational infrastructure to handle the foreclosure crisis.
The city received financial help to alleviate the foreclosure problem, including $2.1 million under the Neighborhood Stabilization Fund and $1 million state fund to purchase and renovate foreclosure houses.
At the same time, Brockton also applied for $21 million under the Neighborhood Stabilization Program 2. Other federal grants are available to help distressed homeowners bring down their mortgages to no more than 31 percent of their gross monthly income.
Industry experts said that foreclosure clinics are held every two weeks by the Neighborhood Housing Services, adding that any effort that aims to prevent the spread of foreclosure is positive.
John Cutts has been educated in the finer points of the foreclosure market over 5 years.