For Immediate Release
September 10, 2011
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Mayor Thomas M. Menino today joined Evelyn Friedman, Director of the Department of Neighborhood Development (DND), and 12 first-time homebuyers of formerly foreclosed properties for a housewarming celebration on Rockwell Street in Dorchester. The formerly abandoned house is now occupied by a family. DND’s Boston Home Center provided the family with a $60,000 loan for interior renovations including kitchen work, exterior work including painting, new porches, new front stairs, and new fencing in the yard. The family contributed over $15,000 of their own money toward the rehabilitation of the house.
“In Boston, we are a national leader on foreclosures thanks to our three-pronged approach – prevention, intervention and reclamation,” said Mayor Menino, referring to the fact that in 1999, the City began with prevention by warning residents about risky mortgages through the Don’t Borrow Trouble campaign. In 2006, the City moved to intervention with a foreclosure counseling program, which saved more than 450 homes, resulting in a citywide foreclosure rate 20% lower than it would have been. Recognizing that foreclosures were still going to happen, in 2009, Boston was one of the few cities in the country to start reclamation efforts by acquiring properties for resale.
Mayor Menino added, “I’m so proud that we’ve been able to put a positive spin on foreclosures. Tomorrow, we will celebrate the fact that we’ve been able to improve our neighborhoods with the renovations of these abandoned properties while assisting 12 families in purchasing their first home.”
The new homeowners are the first group to purchase homes that the city acquired through HUD’s Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP.) DND received more than $21 million in competitively awarded funding through this program to assist the City’s ongoing foreclosure prevention and reclamation efforts. The funding allowed the City to support responsible redevelopment of these 12 foreclosed homes in neighborhoods most burdened by Boston’s bank-owned properties, namely Dorchester, East Boston, Roxbury, Hyde Park and Mattapan.
The City, acting with the Boston Redevelopment Authority, acquired the 12 properties (listed below) and issued RFPs for the rehabilitation and resale. The properties represent the City’s resale initiative of formerly bank foreclosed properties – sold directly to homebuyers and rehabbed with the help of Boston Home Center. Specifically, the properties required no more than $50,000-$65,000 in repairs, and are in varying stages of rehab construction. Several have been completed, and families are now living in their new homes. In the cases of existing tenants, they were given leases with the City initially, which were then transferred to the new owners for a period of at least 2 years.
The 12 Reclaimed Properties
2 Capen Place – Dorchester – single family
5 Dewey Street – Dorchester – single family
223 Chelsea Street – East Boston - 3 family
29 Leighton Road – Hyde Park – single family
2 Corman Road – Mattapan – single family
22 Rockwell Street – Dorchester – single family
18 Marden Avenue – Dorchester – condo unit
116 Ruskindale Road – Hyde Park – single family
53 Havre Street – East Boston – 2 family
184 Bennington Street – East Boston – 3 family
34 Wayland Street – Dorchester – 3 family
1 Marion Place – East Boston – single family
Additionally, the Boston Home Center has utilized $525,000 in NSP funding for families needing assistance in rehabbing non-city acquired foreclosed properties.