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‘How Bad Is Bad?’ Keeping the Focus on NJ’s Foreclosures

NJ Spotlight contributor Joe Tyrell, who yesterday reported in-depth on New Jersey’s worst-in-nation status for foreclosures, discussed the troubling issue on WHYY Newsworks

While allowing that New Jersey is “much better off in terms of housing values and the number of foreclosure cases now than we were a few years ago,” NJ Spotlight contributor Joe Tyrell in a conversation with NewsWorks Tonight host Dave Heller on WHYY yesterday pointed out that “over the past year there were close to 35,000 new foreclosure cases filed in the state courts.” That compares with 18,000 to 20,000 cases annually in the first few years of this century.

New Jersey has the highest foreclosure rates in the country. And, although in the aftermath of the Great Recession most other states climbed out of their foreclosure messes fairly quickly, Tyrell said, “…much of New Jersey continues to tread water and several areas, especially Atlantic City, are doing consistently worse than they were.”

Housing advocates contend that politicians in Trenton must take a lot of the blame for the Garden State’s failure to rebound from the foreclosure problem. To that, Tyrell said, “Certainly, New Jersey has not distinguished itself with forceful action.”

He added, “Very few people in government have been consistently advocating for people who are in the foreclosure process, or threatened with foreclosure, or otherwise have some difficulty with their mortgages.”

Read the original NJ Spotlight report on foreclosures in the Garden State.

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