Today The Atlantic Cities is featuring an article, “What Happens to a Foreclosed New York Apartment Building,” that features UHAB organizers! Check it out!
The article highlights a particular building, 553 E. 169th St. in the Bronx which exemplifies how conditions deteriorate while a building is in foreclosure.
In August of 2011, 553 East 169th Street had 84 code violations. Now, it has 285, ranging from broken window guards to peeling lead-based paint. And research suggests deteriorating buildings like this can even drag down a whole neighborhood.
Weaver’s organization has been working with the tenants here and in other buildings in the city to find responsible new owners (perhaps the tenants themselves?) and to push banks into taking financial responsibility for maintaining these places in the meantime. A lot of these buildings originally went into foreclosure, even though they house rent-paying tenants, because they were overleveraged at the height of the housing boom by speculators who hoped to drive out rent-regulated existing tenants in favor of newer ones who could be charged much more.
We’re excited that this blog – which follows issues facing cities nationwide – is tuned into how tenants suffer when buildings fall into foreclosure!