The City of Cleveland had long been concerned with the problem of increasing foreclosures and vacant and abandoned properties. A number of advocates, community development corporations (CDCs) and community organizations (PolicyMatters Ohio) had helped to draw attention to the issue over a number of years. Cuyahoga County led the state in the number of foreclosures and Ohio led the country. At the same time suburban communities began to feel the impact of increasing foreclosures as well. Advocates including the Coalition on Housing and Homelessness in Ohio (COHHIO) and ReBuild Ohio were working at the state level, as the problem of increasing foreclosures was affecting Ohio's cities and rural areas.
On August 25, 2005 the Cuyahoga Board of County Commissioners released its "Commissioners' Report and Recommendations on Foreclosures." This report marked a significant increase in the scope of the County's comprehensive efforts to address the rising tide of foreclosures and vacant and abandoned properties in Cuyahoga County. The three-year pilot foreclosure initiative recommended in the report, and now being implemented, is a coordinated effort involving eleven County agencies and nine nonprofits as well as municipalities, advocates, lenders and community development groups.