Wednesday, July 06, 2011

PBS NewsHour Highlights Cleveland

Photo by Cheryl Jones of the Grapevine Photo Project

Foreclosures and Clearing Land Focus of NewsHour Report

Last night was an excellent piece on the effort by the Land Bank and the City of Cleveland to clear some of the degrading housing stock as a result of the foreclosure tsunami. The usual suspects were featured including Gus Frangos of the Land Bank, Frank Ford of NPI, Councilman Tony Brancatelli, and Housing Court Judge Raymond Pianka. It was a nice touch to talk to Manfield Frazier about his vineyard in Hough. The piece was centered at Ground Zero of the foreclosure crisis in Slavic Village. They showed houses coming down as part of the thousands that we have destroyed over the last five years. Frank Ford did a good job describing the economics of this crisis with the reality that it costs$7,500 to take down a property while it can cost $100,000 to renovate that property with new electrical, new plumbing and new furnace.

There was a interesting discussion about the flipping of these homes using the internet, and the nasty practices of some of the banks (we are talking to you Deutsche Bank). They sold a property for $500 that was an eyesore, and then the new owner tried flipping it on the internet with a profit of $1,000 to an out of state buyer (sucker) with no intention of doing anything to the property. They are just hoping that the land value will turn around and they can make a profit. These vultures are just trying to earn money off of the misery of hard hit neighborhoods. It was a good piece. Check it out.

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