Foreclosure Crisis Far from Over for NYC Neighborhoods of Color

Posted by Ben Hagen

More than a decade after the financial meltdown, how secure are New Yorkers from the threat of foreclosure? Our recent issue brief seeks to answer this question, based on our analysis of pre-foreclosure notices that mortgage servicers are required to send homeowners at least 90 days before filing a foreclosure action in New York State courts.

Here are our key findings:

  • In New York City’s communities of color, the foreclosure crisis is far from over. Nine of the ten zip codes with the highest number of pre-foreclosure notices are neighborhoods of color.
  • Nearly two-thirds (65.4%) of all notices sent to residents of NYC neighborhoods of color pertained to loans made between 2002 and 2007. As New Economy Project and others have long documented, NYC neighborhoods of color were inundated with predatory subprime lending for more than a decade leading up to the financial meltdown.
  • There are high levels of foreclosure risk throughout the Empire State, including in Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, and the Hudson Valley.


Maps (click to enlarge)

New York City

Long Island

New York State


This is our third report in a series, following Foreclosures in New York: What’s Really Going On?, in 2012, and Foreclosure Risk in New York State, in 2014. 

In the immediate term, New York State must continue to fund foreclosure prevention legal services to ensure people can stay in their homes. At the same time, it is clear that more structural solutions are also required.

The wealth-stripping, instability, and displacement caused by predatory mortgage lending and foreclosures are just some of the reasons why we helped found the NYC Community Land Initiative (NYCCLI) in 2012 – and why we continue to fight, alongside allies from across the city, to promote and expand community land trusts (CLTs) in NYC. By removing housing from the speculative market, and ensuring that residents have a say in land use and other important decisions affecting their neighborhoods, CLTs can serve as a bulwark against predatory practices that have plagued so many communities.

Stay tuned for our upcoming CLT blog series to learn more about this exciting movement, and keep an eye on our work by following us and NYCCLI on twitter and facebook.

Click here to read the full report. 

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