Community Development Research Briefs
Research Briefs feature data and commentary on emerging community development trends.
The worst of the housing crisis may be behind us, but the recent housing market recovery opens up a number of new community development questions. Of particular concern is the potential impact of investor purchases of single-family residences, especially in hard-hit neighborhoods that experienced severe price depreciation and offered an abundant supply of distressed property.
Following the aftermath of the Great Recession, national indicators are starting to show signs of improvement in the housing market. However, such indicators mask the realities of what’s happening on the ground in low- and moderate-income (LMI) communities that were disproportionately affected by the housing crisis.
Households whose balance sheets were dominated by housing, particularly those in depressed markets and those exposed to high-cost predatory mortgages, were deeply exposed to the downside risk that became reality during the Great Recession. These households tended to be lower-income, minority, and have lower educational attainment, meaning they were already struggling with low net worth prior to the recession.
Using data from U.S. Census Bureau, this research brief analyzes the changing geography of poverty in the Bay Area. It focuses on the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area and explores the demographic changes that took place between 2000 and 2009.
Postsecondary educational expenses and student loan balances have been trending steadily upward, but persistent unemployment and weak economic conditions have created an alarming new trend of rising student loan defaults. This Brief examines broad trends in student borrowing in the Federal Reserve’s 12th District, with an emphasis on students from low- and moderate-income households. The rise of student borrowing has important community development implications as it directly impacts the present and future financial well-being of LMI individuals.
Everyone knows the old real estate adage that the three most important factors in determining the value of a given property are location, location, and location. This is to say that place matters; a neighborhood confers a bundle of amenities to its residents that are specific to that geography. This bundle can include proximity to parks, small-scale retail offerings, high quality schools, and a variety of transportation options, as well as low crime rates and clean air. These amenities are arranged in a variety of configurations across space, and most households determine which aspects are most important to them, and then choose their neighborhood accordingly.
Within the Federal Reserve’s 12th District, over 4 million families and individuals received the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) for tax year 2007, totaling over $8 billion in credits. In this Research Brief, we examine trends in EITC usage across the 12th District, and look at how the EITC and tax time provide a unique opportunity to link lower-income households to financial services and other asset building.