June 28, 2011 [Business Wire]
CLEVELAND — Bank of America has entered an agreement with the Cuyahoga County Land Reutilization Corporation (Cuyahoga Land Bank) to help alleviate the impact of vacant properties on surrounding neighborhoods and the community at large. The bank will donate up to 100 vacant foreclosed properties to the Land Bank for reuse, redevelopment and neighborhood revitalization, reducing urban blight.
To address problems caused by a growing inventory of abandoned, uninhabitable properties in Cleveland and some suburbs, Bank of America will identify vacant low-value foreclosed properties for donation to the Cuyahoga Land Bank and contribute toward the costs of demolishing or deconstructing any deteriorating buildings. The Land Bank will use the vacant properties for future development, open space and urban farming, or other productive uses that best align with the overall strategy for the communities in which they are located.
“Unfortunately, many homeowners faced with unemployment, underemployment and other economic hardships have transitioned to alternative housing situations, and in many cases have walked away from their homes, leaving behind vacant and deteriorating properties that can cause neighborhood blight,” said Rebecca Mairone, national mortgage outreach executive for Bank of America Home Loans.
“Bank of America is committed to a comprehensive neighborhood stabilization approach to help support our customers and the communities we serve and live in. This program builds on the initiatives we already have taken in homeownership retention, foreclosure prevention and neighborhood stabilization and revitalization.”
“The Cuyahoga Land Bank is thrilled to be adding Bank of America as a partner in our efforts to eliminate blight and return properties in Cuyahoga County to productive use,” said Gus Frangos, president and general counsel for the Cuyahoga Land Bank. “We are happy to be part of a new public-private partnership that will have a positive impact on our community.”
Bank of America earlier announced similar plans to make low-value vacant property donations to the cities of Detroit and Chicago.
Bank of America’s homeownership retention and foreclosure prevention initiatives in Cleveland include a mortgage modification outreach event earlier this month where nearly 500 customers responded to invitations to meet with mortgage modification specialists over a three-day period. This initiative provided a convenient opportunity for customers who are having difficulty making their mortgage payments to receive face-to-face counseling, on-site processing and underwriting of modification requests and other assistance.
Bank of America
Bank of America is one of the world’s largest financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small- and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 58 million consumer and small business relationships with approximately 5,800 retail banking offices and approximately 18,000 ATMs and award-winning online banking with 30 million active users. Bank of America is among the world’s leading wealth management companies and is a global leader in corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 4 million small business owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations in more than 40 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is a component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.