University of Alabama Studies Impact of 2011 Tornado on Foreclosures

October 22, 2013

A University of Alabama study has found that the April 2011 tornado didn’t severely impact home foreclosures in the Tuscaloosa area.

Sociologist Bronwen Lichtenstein says researchers noted a slight decrease in foreclosures after the tornado. She and associate professor Joseph Weber studied foreclosures in the tornado zone two years before the disaster and two years afterward.

Lichtenstein says data shows that people in wealthy and middle class areas were able to rebuild, mostly with the help of insurance.

However, reconstruction efforts were more scant in poorer areas and in neighborhoods with a higher concentration of renters.

Lichtenstein told the Tuscaloosa News some landlords were given settlement money and didn’t rebuild because they’re waiting for renewal plans from the city, buyouts or other developments.

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