House auction an opportunity to stabilize local communities

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In the past, I’ve shared with Defender readers my concerns over the long-term negative economic impact the mortgage crisis could have on African-Americans through Chicago Urban League President Cheryle Jackson’s column.

In the past, I’ve shared with Defender readers my concerns over the long-term negative economic impact the mortgage crisis could have on African-Americans through Chicago Urban League President Cheryle Jackson’s column. One thing I know for sure: Just because foreclosures aren’t leading the news doesn’t mean the crisis is over. In communities of color, the record loss of homes adds up to a loss of economic power. And we’ve only begun to feel the impact, I’m afraid.

So, today I’m happy to tell you how the Chicago Urban League is working to flip the script on the foreclosure crisis and provide African-Americans with opportunities to invest in and take back their communities–one house at a time.

On Saturday, the Urban League will team up with auctioneers Hudson and Marshall and their marketing partner, Atlanta-based APD Solutions, to auction off some 70 foreclosed homes in Chicago. The auction will be held at 1 p.m. in the Grand Ballroom of the Chicago Marriott Southwest at Burr Ridge, at 1200 Burr Ridge Pkwy.

So, how exciting is this, you ask? Well, it isn’t everyday that a nonprofit organization gets an opportunity to bring an auction like this to the African-American community. The economic misfortunes that have led us here are no reason not to take advantage of this terrific investment opportunity, one that has the added benefit of stabilizing communities.

This is a history-making partnership. These types of auctions have been going on all along. But most of the time, the Black community never hears about them.

Most of the 70 homes on the auction block are located in African-American communities hard hit by foreclosure. They are valued at between $10,000 and $340,000. Financing will be available onsite, but participants are encouraged to get pre-approved by a lender. You can register for the auction and view the homes online at http://www.hudsonandmarshall. com. You must register to be eligible to bid.

The auction isn’t just for buyers who plan to actually live in the home. I see it as an opportunity for investors to increase the number of rent-to-own opportunities in certain areas so that people who have been displaced by foreclosure can remain in the communities while they get back on their feet.

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