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Foreclosing on the American Dream


2008 Foreclosing on the American Dream
Michigan has one of the highest foreclosure rates in the country. Thousands of people in the state have had their homes foreclosed on. Michigan Radio takes an in-depth look at what this means for our state, our communities, and all of us. Why has Michigan been hit so hard? What is this doing to our neighborhoods? What are the solutions? At the end of the week our documentary, "Foreclosing on the American Dream" explored how home foreclosures affect people, neighborhoods, and even art. 

Past Shows

The Foreclosure Process Explained
Dustin Dwyer

Thousands of families in Michigan have already gone through foreclosure. Dustin Dwyer has a look at what to expect if you fall behind on your mortgage payments, and you can't catch up. Listen


A Young Person's Perspective
Jennifer Guerra

We hear a lot about what it's like for adults to go through foreclosure. But what about their kids? Kate Huff is 18 now. But she was just 16 when her family's house went into foreclosure. Kate sat down with her dad Ted to talk about what it was like for her to lose her childhood home. Listen


Guardians of the Block
Sarah Hulett

A vacant home can blemish a tidy block almost overnight with fast-growing weeds and front porches littered with handbills. Some neighbors ignore those signs of abandonment. But others pull the weeds, and pick up the trash. Michigan Radio's Sarah Hulett reports. Listen


Why So Many Foreclosures
Christina Shockley

Michigan has had one of the highest foreclosure rates in the nation for more than two years. Don Grimes is with the Institute for Research on Labor, Employment, and the Economy at the University of Michigan. Christina Shockley asked him why there are so many foreclosures in the state. Listen


Foreclosures Hurt Regular Home Sales
Tracy Samilton

Foreclosures don't hurt just the owners who lose their homes. Foreclosures ripple through neighborhoods and force down the price of every home that's being sold. Listen


Where People Go After Foreclosure
Charity Nebbe

When people lose their homes to foreclosure they have to go somewhere, but where? Kurt Metzger is a demographer and the Director of Research of United Way of Southeast Michigan. Michigan Radio's Charity Nebbe spoke with him to find out where displaced people are finding shelter. Listen


Seniors Not Immune to Foreclosure
Christina Shockley

Most people fall into foreclosure because of job-loss, an illness, or some other financial hardship. For senior citizens, the reasons for foreclosure are often much different. Terry Allon is a foreclosure prevention specialist at the Housing Bureau for Seniors, part of the University of Michigan Health System. Michigan Radio's Christina Shockley asked her about the reasons seniors go into foreclosure. Listen


The Family Pet Faces Foreclosure
Charity Nebbe

People all over Michigan are losing their homes in record numbers and in many cases that means their pets are too. Most of Michigan's animal shelters and rescue groups are operating at full capacity. Michigan Radio's Charity Nebbe spoke with Debra Carmody, the Executive Director of Cascades Humane Society in Jackson. Listen


Community Organizations Pitching In
Steve Carmody

People across Michigan want to find solutions to the foreclosure crisis. In Benzie County, one group is doing everything from helping people get their finances in order to actually buying foreclosed properties. Michigan Radio's Steve Carmody reports. Listen


State Government Reacts
Rick Pluta

Earlier this year Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox put on a series of foreclosure informational forums around the state that attracted thousands of people. But until a few months ago, there were few alternatives for borrowers in trouble. That's when Governor Granholm and the Legislature scrambled to find ways to help. Rick Pluta reports from the state Capitol. Listen


Facing Foreclosure
Debbie Gilliam

Debbie Gilliam must be out of her house in the next month. Gilliam tells us how going through foreclosure is tearing her family apart, and she talks about her hopes for moving back into her house in the future. Listen


Jump Starting the Housing Market
Sarah Hulett

A Detroit area developer has the idea of raising the property values on in its development by rehabbing foreclosed homes nearby. Michigan Radio's Sarah Hulett reports. Listen


Foreclosed Art
Jennifer Guerra

One artist was inspired to look at the foreclosure crisis through the eyes of a child. Even his art was not immune from a foreclosure of sorts. Michigan Radio's Jennifer Guerra reports. Listen


Working Hours
Jack Lessenberry

The real wild west of the mortgage industry might go back further than one thinks. Michigan Radio Senior Political Analyst Jack Lessenberry tells us the real history and about what we might learn from looking back. Listen


The Struggle to Prevent the Next One
Heather Eleanor Mooney

Heather Eleanor Mooney is a foreclosure prevention specialist with the Washtenaw County Treasurer's office. She explains that the stress of foreclosure can affect people's health. Listen


Process Brings Clarity
Regina Myree

Regina Myree currently rents an apartment in Ypsilanti. She explains how losing two properties to foreclosure actually helped her gain a clearer perspective on what really matters in life.