©scottchan - freedigitalphotos

©scottchan – freedigitalphotos

If you’re like many others, you could care less if your neighbor is facing foreclosure, you might think, that’s to bad, but it’s not my problem.  Well you better rethink that, because if you have a foreclosure in your neighborhood, in can be trouble for your property too.  There are a number of reasons why you should help your neighbors avoid foreclosure.

With the millions of Americans losing their homes, the “family” neighborhoods are drastically changing. You need to ask yourself how many houses in your neighborhood run the risk of falling into foreclosure. The more there are, the bigger of a decrease in your property values. Also in a number of statistics, neighborhoods with heavy foreclosure rates have seen more vagrants, drug dealers and prostitutes, as people take advantage of the empty buildings.

As foreclosures increase in your neighborhood, potential buyers will take notice and avoid buying, causing the area to go downhill. When your neighbor has a foreclosure and the house is vacant, it is an ideal spot for vandals to hit up. Thieves love to frequent foreclosed homes, stripping copper wires, plumbing, carpet and any other valuable item that may have been left behind. If you don’t try and help you neighbor avoid foreclosure, you will watch helplessly as your area becomes less desirable to live in.

Also the property next to you can be a complete eyesore, with broken windows and overgrown lawns. That will be a clear sign to potential buyers that the neighborhood has fallen on bad times. If you try to sell you home in the future, it won’t be easy to do so, if you’re surrounded by foreclosure.

Studies have shown that for every 1 percent increase in foreclosures, there is an associated and accompanied 2.23 percent increase in violent crime and problems. There are numerous examples of the impact of foreclosures in certain American cities.

American cities affected by negatively by foreclosure:

• Cleveland
• Las Vegas
• Jacksonville Florida
• Miami Florida
• Orlando Florida
• Stockton California

The foreclosures from high cost loans transformed the middle class neighborhood to a series of empty eyesores, encouraging crime and drugs. As the quality of life disappears, so do the prices on the homes. This affects homeowners still living there, trapping them into a lower value home and decreasing the value and morals of the neighborhood.

It is predicted that about 3 percent of all homeowners will go into foreclosure by the end of 2009. However, 24.5 percent of all homeowners will feel the affects of the foreclosure crisis. So what can you do to help your neighbor and save you property from a downward spiral?

First thing you can do is talk with you neighbor openly about the issue. Make sure they know you are a helping friend and ask them what you can do to for them. You don’t need to pay their mortgage for them, but maybe you can pitch in and help sell their property, saving them from foreclosure. Maybe you know a professional real estate investor you can get your neighbor in touch with. Do online research for them; let them know what their options are.

When someone is facing foreclosure, there are almost always options. Many people think the only option is to find more money to pay the bills,  but sometimes it’s just a matter of finding the right information. In some cases, you may even know of a job opportunity or a more affordable housing solution. The truth is, there is always something you can do to help, so take a minute to talk to your friends and neighbors about foreclosure and lend a helping hand today.

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