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Snellville Sees Highest Foreclosure Rate in County

Updated: Nearly $100 million federal relief package given to Georgia will not reach homeowners, but will be set aside as part of Governor's discretionary fund.

(Editor's note: bank-owned vs. resale are separated by zipcode at the bottom of the article.  Also at the bottom are foreclosure percentages by school district.)

According to Dar’Shun Kendrick, ,  the funds set aside by the federal government and distributed among the states are headed toward Gov. Nathan Deal’s slush fund. 

The funds are part of a National Mortgage Settlement, paid by the banks.  That money is then divided by the states, nearly $100 million of which comes to Georgia.  

But not to the homeowners themselves.  While 27 states are using the funds to directly aid distressed homeowners, Georgia is not one of them.   

The deal was a part of the 500-600 page 2012 budget, which Kendrick voted against. 

“None of it is going toward homeowners,” said Kendrick. 

Tim Franzen, an organizer for Occupy Atlanta and Occupy Our Homes Atlanta, believes that the money should have been reserved for those who have been hardest hit in the foreclosure crisis. 

Franzen and others from Occupy Atlanta in an effort to help a local family stay in their home.

“The real insult,” Franzen said, “is that Georgia is the hardest hit in the country.”

One in every 300 homes in Georgia is in foreclosure, according to the AJC.  That’s double the national average. 

In Snellville, (including unincorporated), it's even worse: 1 in 127 homes are in foreclosure (as of June 2012).  

That's the worst in the county.  

(Editor's note:  there is a significant difference in the foreclosure to residence ratio between the two Snellville zipcodes.)

of home sales in Snellville were foreclosures.

Foreclosure reform is something that is high on Kendrick’s list of priorities.  She has attempted to have bills passed, including HB 781, that would revolutionize the foreclosure process, according to Kendrick, but so far they have all been shut down. 

“Next year,” she said, “I want to break down the bill into separate components.  If they won’t pass the whole thing, maybe parts of it will pass.”

One thing she wants to do is change Georgia from a non-judicial foreclosure state to a judicial one.  Every other legal procedure requires a person to hand you the papers, according to Kendrick, but that is not the case with foreclosures. 

“Under our current system,” she said, “you get a certified letter and they sell your house on the courthouse step.  It doesn’t go through a judge.”

She clarified that she is not trying to keep people in their homes if they can’t afford it.  

"I won't rest until Georgia passes some sort of foreclosure reform," said Kendrick.  

Kendrick will face Rep. in November's election.  

30039 Zipcode:
Homes for sale -  151 properties
Bank-owned - 84 
Total homes - 5,882 
1 in 70 are in foreclosure and on the market (as of Aug. 8)
Note: many foreclosures are not on the market but are being held back by the banks.   

30078 Zipcode:
Homes for sale - 183
Bank-owned - 34 
Total homes - 10,470 
1 in 308 are in foreclosure and on the market (as of Aug. 8)

Brookwood (sales for 2012):
40.9% were distressed properties
374 total sales 

South Gwinnett (sales for 2012)
67.8% were distressed properties 
469 total sales 

Shiloh (sales for 2012)
63.98% were distressed properties 
336 total sales 

Robert Higgins August 09, 2012 at 08:00 PM
Everybody is to blame in this disaster, holding the banks solely resposible is letting others off too easily. This blame game is what is wrong with our country and why there will always be class warfare and the financial divide is widening even more so. The wide margin seen within the 30078 is not suprising, given that those in the Brookwood area are most likely better educated and more financially responsible. Gwinnett boomed the biggest in GA, so the bust in this county and how large it is is not suprising. On a final note, using Occupy as a reference in your article is not very credible. None of the now defunct Occupy movements have helped their self-inflicted victims. If anything they have revealed these predatory borrowers are their own worst enemies.
Crystal Huskey August 09, 2012 at 08:03 PM
Occupy was active in Snellville last year, which is why I referenced them. Other than that, all good points ;)
Robert Higgins August 09, 2012 at 08:11 PM
"Foreclosure is nothing to be ashamed of. The banks are robbing everyone" Bad advice and hysterics.
Robert Higgins August 09, 2012 at 10:11 PM
Ms. Huskey, most people would not consider one isolated incident where Occupy was in Snellville for a few days "active". Besides, the Rorey's failed in their attempted lawsuit vs. Fannie Mae. Contacting Occupy was the last in a long line of mistakes made by this one family. The truth came out with the help of Occupy. The boom in Gwinnett was due in part by families seeking to get into the highly regarded public schools. I think you will find that lower education levels and lack of financial savvy played a bigger part of failed homeownership than blaming the evil banks for forcing people to buy homes. Stories like Mr. Penney's above are the exception and not the rule. Encouraging foreclosure and placing sole blame on the banks is very toxic rhetoric. He is not part of the solution because he is still the problem. Giving people excuses and a comfort zone to do wrong is never good. Class warfare keeps those at the bottom down for a lifetime. Own up to your mistakes and learn from them. Wallowing in the blame game is a dead end. Thank you.
Bill Burton, Stone Mtn August 21, 2012 at 02:31 AM
I don't recall any evidence of the Government's "forcing" the banks, or even pressuring them, to grant potential home buyers what's called in the business "liar's loans" (loans based on collateral fraud), which are illicit if not outright illegal. The banks did this not from pressure, but to use these bad mortgages as components of bundled junk bonds and credit derivatives based on them so they could use those as collateral to play the global roulette wheel. When their numbers didn't come up in the black, they turned to the Obama White House, which granted them $trillions in our tax dollars, which they turned around and used in turn to buy up productive assets and turn them into cash cows (further de-industrializing the economy) and to raise CEO salaries (which now surpass what they pay in taxes).

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