The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper

Housing in East Toledo

At a housing committee meeting hosted by East Toledo Family Center community builder Jodi Gross as part of the One Voice for East Toledo initiative, much of the conversation is from residents talking about poorly kept properties.

The grass is overgrown, the home and garage are not being painted or properly maintained, the siding, gutters, and other fixtures are torn off, in disrepair, or missing, windows are broken, and sometimes buildings look ready to collapse.

Neighbors, meanwhile, are getting impatient because their property values are falling, the neighborhood appears increasingly blighted, and their safety is threatened.

Toledo Housing Court Judge C. Allen McConnell sees and hears cases concerning nuisance properties almost every day. East Toledo leaders regularly meet with McConnell to discuss housing issues in their neighborhoods.

Pilot project to inventory Birmingham properties

The Lucas County Land Bank increases property values by tearing down dilapidated homes with little value and turning homes with a tax delinquency to new owners for rehab.

Demolition removes properties of little value from the housing stock thus increasing the value of remaining properties. Increasing property values encourages other homeowners to invest because they eventually will recoup their investment.

In 2013, the land bank demolished 60 houses in East Toledo. There are typically at any time close to 100 homes in East Toledo identified for demolition.

Cindy Geronimo, land bank director, said “It’s a fluid list that keeps changing. Some may come off because of an appeal.”

Each home identified is inspected by nuisance abatement code enforcement officials from the city. Geronimo said even if a home is not slated for demolition, the homeowner will be cited for nuisance and she promises the land bank “will find out what’s going on with that property.”

Some lenders believe the East Toledo housing market was particularly hard hit by the reaction of investors to changes in credit standards, down payment requirements, the availability of money and other factors.

Marty Bihn, a loan officer with Northern Ohio Investment Co., said he knows of investors who owned 10-30 properties and lost or walked away from them as the market turned down.

“The real change was not in owner-occupant behavior or financing availability, but the behavior and changes in the investor market,” he said. “I know three or four investors who have lost more than 15 properties each in the last three years. That’s contributed to an over supply and that’s caused a sharp price drop. I think the investor market collapsed and led the owner market down. Not the other way around.

“Investors have had a bigger change in the (income) documentation level requirements than owner occupants. I think the lack of investor financing has meant the price has fallen until new investors can get the properties for cash. They’re not going out and getting loans for them today. I’d guess in the last year, three of four home sales in East Toledo have been for cash.


Universal Income

What do you think of presidential candidate Andrew Yang's proposal for a universal basic income of $1,000 per month for every adult?
728901008 [{"id":"323","title":"It will help millions of people who are increasingly losing their jobs to automation.","votes":"0","pct":"0","type":"x","order":"1","resources":[]},{"id":"324","title":"No, if the proposal is paid for by tax payers.","votes":"0","pct":"0","type":"x","order":"2","resources":[]},{"id":"325","title":"Yes, if billionaires pay for it, as labor costs disappear due to automation.","votes":"0","pct":"0","type":"x","order":"3","resources":[]}] ["#194e84","#3b6b9c","#1f242a","#37414a","#60bb22","#f2babb"] sbar 160 160 /component/communitypolls/vote/118-universal-income No answer selected. Please try again. Thank you for your vote. Answers Votes ...