A new dream : redefining homeownership through the Post Foreclosure Eviction Defense Campaign
Redefining homeownership through the Post Foreclosure Eviction Defense Campaign
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Urban Studies and Planning.
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Just a few years ago photos of streets lined with foreclosure signs and anecdotes about families who had lost their savings were on the front page of every major newspaper. Many of these stories profiled immigrants who had been taken advantage of by predatory lenders. In Boston alone, 81% of all foreclosures in 2008 happened in communities where at least one quarter of the population is foreign born. However, without available data on lending and nativity status, it is difficult to prove that predatory lenders explicitly targeted immigrants. Instead, by looking at concentrations of subprime lending and foreclosure spatially, this thesis explores to what extent and why immigrants in Boston were impacted by the crisis. In addition, it argues that the harm felt by first generation immigrants is the result of structural racism in homeownership policy perpetually stripping inner-city communities of wealth. Without radically altering our conception of homeownership, communities of color and the evolving populations residing within them will continue to struggle. Encouragingly, community groups have historically played an important role in advocating for policy reform, and we can continue to look to local partners and activists to understand what changes are needed now. Because of the hard work of a close-knit group of residents, organizers and lawyers, people have been able to stay in their homes. In addition to preventing evictions, this network has reformed law to better protect low-income homeowners, created programs that address the root of historic problems, and advocated for policy change. Collectively their model is referred to as the Post Foreclosure Eviction Defense Campaign, and it serves as a national example of an innovative and participatory approach to foreclosure response and prevention. When creating supportive homeownership policies for immigrants and other marginalized populations, policymakers can learn from their ideology, which divorces housing from market instability, and advocates for a more flexible, community-oriented vision for homeownership.
Thesis: M.C.P., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Urban Studies and Planning, 2015.Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references (pages 86-91).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Urban Studies and Planning.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Urban Studies and Planning.