Submitted by Jeff Buster on Thu, 12/20/2007 - 21:41.

Homeless home under Free Stamp in Cleveland

10.18.11 Occupy Cleveland needs a permit for Willard Park and for Public Square.   Downtown Cleveland Alliance needs access for Xmas decor. Right.

Christmas in Cleveland will be hard for many.

But some have shelter, colored with red, white, and green.

The FREE STAMP is a negative, as is much of Cleveland.

Has the "FREE" message changed in Cleveland since Artists Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen designed the sculpture?

free-stampP1140867.jpg90.47 KB

The dark side of Pop

I have always thought the Free Stamp is particularly brilliant, for both its subject and the dialog it suggests. Think about all the meanings associated with the word "free." In its present location I think this work provokes biting criticism of America and the "freedom" that we claim to hold dear.


Getting the real word out about Cleveland, Ohio, (linked to realneo by economic "impact" )

has linked to Realneo yesterday on the year old photo of a homeless person's bed room in a cardboard lined wire shopping cart and summer patio lounge chair - in the snow.

Why bother seeing...

  ..the world for REAL.  Sadly, so true. 


I just got wind of how the the silent partner LLC/flipper scam works in my neighborhood straight from the loan shark himself, who describes himself as the victim.  Does any one care? 


If the fellow feels victimized, I would appreciate an interview with him.  Let's air this out...

Deed in lieu of foreclosure

I will email you his name. He is a realtor with Keller Williams, who describes himself as an "investor." He picked up the house at auction and then transferred the deed to his relative for the price listed on the auditor's site as $20,000, but in actuality he gave his relative a loan of $47,000 that he was to pay off as a "mortgage" to him, once he fixed up the house and rented it out to Section 8. Well, the "relative" did not make good on his end of the bargain and the "investor" reclaimed the deed--you can see that I don't understand how the paperwork gets fixed up at the Recorders office and Auditor's office, but that is how it works. The house is now listed as having transferred back to a LLC (actually the realtor/investor) and the deed type is "Deed in lieu of Foreclosure." The Rocky River relative must not have been happy with this arrangement, because he left the windows open to the elements and the pipes froze. The "realtor/developer" was working my neighbor as I approached him. Ready to flip again. Meanwhile, he didn't bother to dispose of the trash on the front porch or the mail piled in the mailbox...this would appear to be a variation of the straw buyer scam ran on the east side of Cleveland.

REO ownership


New Poverty
Center report examines
what happens to properties after sheriff’s sale and REO ownership.


properties that go into foreclosure eventually end up at a sheriff’s
auction, where they are usually purchased by the banks, mortgage companies,
mortgage services, and government-sponsored enterprises involved in financing
the foreclosed mortgage loan. These properties are referred to as
‘REO’ (real-estate owned) properties. Between 2005 and 2008, there
has been a drastic increase in REO properties being sold at extremely low
prices—$10,000 and often less.


The Center
on Urban Poverty and Community Development has produced a report, “Beyond
REO: Property Transfers at Extremely Distressed Prices in Cuyahoga County,
2005-2008,” that takes a look at the trend of REO properties sold at
$10,000 or less; the most frequent sellers and buyers of these properties in
2007 and 2008; time between property transactions; the price of properties in
subsequent transactions; and limited information about the practices of some
buyers and sellers of REO properties.


The study
finds that 75 percent of REO properties on the east side of Cleveland sold for
$10,000 or less in 2008, and that many other areas are seeing high rates of REO
properties going for dangerously low prices. Deutsche Bank and Wells Fargo are
among top sellers of properties at these prices.


different individuals and organizations are purchasing these properties, and properties
are sold multiple times, often quickly. After leaving REO, 44.32 percent of
properties were sold again within 90 days. The condition of the property is
often unknown, but reported by community members to be extremely distressed,
often having been victim to vandalism and robbery while vacant during and after


effectiveness of buyers in returning these low-valued properties to occupancy
or productive use by other means has yet to be evaluated, and doing so will
remain an important challenge for many communities in years to come. Programs
like the Cuyahoga County Land Bank, currently being deliberated in the Ohio
House and Senate, show promise in helping reclaim and rehabilitate these
distressed properties.


The report
can be accessed from the Center on Urban Poverty and Community
Development’s website:

Direct link:


direct questions to Claudia Coulton, claudia [dot] coulton [at] case [dot] edu" target="_blank">claudia [dot] coulton [at] case [dot] edu,
216-374-0748.  Technical
and methodology question can be answered by Michael Schramm, schramm [at] case [dot] edu" target="_blank">schramm [at] case [dot] edu, 216-368-0206.


Michael Schramm


Center on Urban Poverty and Community Development

Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences

Case Western
Reserve University


schramm [at] case [dot] edu" target="_blank">schramm [at] case [dot] edu


How will the land bank REALLY address the problem?

See above post--Can someone please post a short and simple explanation that shows how the land bank will prevent flipping of properties? Why are these properties allowed to change hands without point of sale inspections? Wouldn't this address some of the root evil?

By the way, the above information was sent out to media outlets yesterday 12/9 and printed pretty much verbatim on page C4 of today's Plain Dealer.

Banks and LLCs

Banks and LLCs.  Can't the county collect taxes from these entities while they hold properties in foreclosure?  Just wondering.  This is part of my skepticism for creating a holding tank for these properties after every federal dollar has been wrung from them.  Also, properties do not go to the land bank until there have been two auctions on the foreclosed property AND the property taxes on the property must be delinquent. Also, what about code enforcement on these properties while the banks and LLCs own them? Non-compliance could force properties into receivership, but that option is not made feasible because incompetence at local CDCs precludes this capacity.

I know I may seem like a broken record on this topic, but my main concern would be constantly going to "federal" dollars to solve this problem with demolitions that ultimately cost the city and the "poor," who do pay taxes, again, and again.  HUD dollars are killing us in a cyclical hand-out cycle. 

Qualify for the federal dollars based on poverty and it creates more poverty, which qualifies for more federal dollars....Many of these LLCs are turning properties over to "investors/developers," who own multiple properties that will be converted to Section 8 rental..this is happening now all over Cuyahoga County, not just in my neighborhood... now, our suburbs are also feeding from the federal trough.

Federal dollars are killing us.  I don't want a hand out in my neighborhood.  I just want someone willing to live on my street and willing to actually pay taxes that provide services for those tax dollars--safety, SCHOOLS, streets, water/sewer, garbage collection, snow removal, recreation....

And, despite all the negativity about Cleveland proper...I have most of these services.  But it will be harder and harder to just have these basics...not just for those of us in the city, but for all of you who live outside the city.

The Cuyahoga County Planning Commission links to position papers on the "solution" proposed by land banks... Read through these documents. 
Does Cleveland's response, which includes "targeted" assistance to six designated neighborhoods really make sense?
Todd Swanstrom thinks Cleveland is taking a better approach to the problem of limited federal assistance...REALLY? All of these proposed solutions have merit, but look to administration and ask yourself...

Have we had good administration in Cuyahoga County??

Beyond REO, a new report from Case's Center on Urban Poverty and Community Development, tracked property transfers of Cuyahoga County houses following sheriff's sales. In 2005, 3.62% of these houses sold at extremely depressed prices. By June 2008, the proportion had grown to 42.26%. Many of these properties are in Cleveland's east side neighborhoods. The report identified the proposed countywide land banks

Meanwhile, a new policy discussion paper (PDF) from the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland describes the countywide land bank legislation. In addition, University of Missouri - St. Louis Professor Todd Swanstromways that Cleveland and St. Louis have responded to the foreclosure crisis (PDF).

as a potential method of returning distressed properties to productive use. compared the

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(BTW, Frank Giglio was not in arrears for back taxes on his property in the NPI designated for federal assistance annointed Tremont at taxpayer cost we just created another vacant property problem --wait, I have an idea!  I'll apply for a Neighborhood Connections grant to BEAUTIFY and plant native grasses and such....been there).

Occupy Cleveland needs a turn out on Friday




IMPORTANT: Major Rally Friday, Oct. 21 @ 1 PM

We are having a major rally on Friday, Oct. 21. Friday is the day our permits expire. We need as many people as possible to come Friday at 1 PM. The rally is at the northwest quadrant of Public Square (the park). Please come as soon as you are able.

My note:If you plan to attend, please go to and read the forums. There are training sessions planned for non-violent resistance. Even if you do not plan on acts of civil disobedience, the training helps should you be around those choosing to participate in civil disobedience,

We support Occupy Cleveland

We support Occupy Cleveland and the young protestors. I brought up White face because that is an issue and it needed to be addressed. Most people will take a look at a racially sensitive issue without attacking the messenger from polls that reiterate racial slurs to historical activity that offends the Black community. I had to be agressive because I knew this site had people that would push White face anyway as they did the issue around the offensive poll. As we grow we will be able to say, hey. maybe that is offensive to a group of people that are ethically different from me. That's called having cultural competence.