You might think that the foreclosure crisis is mainly hitting innocent people taken advantage of by unscrupulous lenders.

Truth is, the reality is a lot more complex.

in an article in this week’s Dorchester Reporter, Chris Lovett reports that many homes in Boston’s Dorchester and Roxbury neighborhoods appear to have been bought by speculators and flipped for inflated amounts, or unceremoniously dumped as the owners fled (if they ever existed, at all).

A review of more than 200 conversions over the last two years in Boston – mostly in Dorchester and Roxbury – shows more than 100 foreclosure filings against owners who bought more than one unit, sometimes in the same building. Names that appear as unit buyers with mortgage trouble sometimes turn up later as investors converting more units, or as people with power of attorney to represent other buyers.

What will happen next is anyone’s guess. Will new buyers come in to stabilize the neighborhoods, or will the faltering economy leave destruction in its path?

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