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Variable Definitions:
Foreclosures: The number of foreclosed housing units in a given area

Los Angeles Housing Department

Years Available:

Methodology Note:

The original data comes at the point level. Our team geocoded the locations to generate X/Y coordinates, then spatial joined each point to 2020 Census Tracts.

Why are these variables important to measure?


Foreclosure happens when a homeowner is unable to make mortgage payments on their property, allowing the lending institution to seize the property and evict the homeowner. High foreclosure rates are considered indicators of housing crises. Nearly 1,000 foreclosures per day occurred in 1933 during the Great Depression, which led to the introduction of government actions aimed at refinancing unpaid mortgages. Foreclosure activity rose by 81% during the Great Recession in 2008, which prompted moratoriums during the COVID-19 pandemic to protect renters and homeowners.

Housing foreclosure has negative impacts on households and neighborhoods. High foreclosure rates in a neighborhood can lead to a lack of community and economic investment, vacancies and blight, increased levels of property crime and vandalism, and overall lower property values. Foreclosures disproportionately impact people of color; Black and Hispanic/Latino/a people experience foreclosure nearly twice as often as non-Hispanic/Latino/a white people, regardless of income. Households who file for foreclosure are often economically strained and must deal with the consequences of finding new and affordable housing and displacement from their community and schools.
Written by Gabriela Magaña


Carr, J.H., Anacker, K.B., & Mulcahy, M.L. (2011). The Foreclosure Crisis and Its Impact on Communities of Color: Research and Solutions. National Community Reinvestment Coalition. https://ncrc.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/ncrc_foreclosurewhitepaper_2011.pdf
Neal, M., & Goodman, L. (2021, May 14). Understanding the Difference between the COVID-19 Recession and Great Recession Can Help Policymakers Implement Successful Loss Mitigation. Urban Institute. https://www.urban.org/urban-wire/understanding-differences-between-covid-19-recession-and-great-recession-can-help-policymakers-implement-successful-loss-mitigation
Rose, J.D. (2011). The Incredible HOLC? Mortgage Relief during the Great Depression. Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, 43(6), 1073-1107. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1538-4616.2011.00418.x

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