Uh Oh! Living Near a Foreclosure May Be Bad for Your Health

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Back in 2011, my wife and I spent six months renting a Waverly row home in the middle of foreclosure at the same time we were expecting our first child. Let me tell you, I had a sense it was bad for our health. New research suggests that even living within a 100-meter radius of a foreclosed property may be messing with your blood pressure.

Harvard Scientists in their study of 1,740 people in Framingham, Mass., found that people who lived within 100 meters of a lender-owned foreclosure, saw their systolic blood pressure spike by 1.71 mm Hg on average.

What’s behind the correlation? It’s too early to know, but the study’s lead author Mariana Arcaya hypothesized that sharing a block with a foreclosure could add stress for residents who believe “their own properties are less valuable, their streets less attractive or safe and their neighborhoods less stable.” Another possibility Arcaya offers is that the perception the neighborhood is less safe could limit how much residents exercise.



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