Targeted communities get first dibs to buy foreclosed properties

Targeted communities get first dibs to buy foreclosed properties
Targeted communities get first dibs to buy foreclosed properties

File this story under "ironic."

Lots of taxpayers bought homes they couldn't afford. So they lost their homes. Cities -- meaning taxpayers -- are now going to buy those foreclosed homes. Sound goofy? It's for real.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has announced the launch of a new program called First Look, in which banks will give state and local governments and nonprofit organizations a first shot at buying foreclosed properties.

Under the program, communities will get 48 hours' advance notice to buy the distressed properties at a 1% discount, according to HUD. The program's goal is to boost the $7 billion Neighborhood Stabilization Program which, as part of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008, provided grants to some local governments to purchase and redevelop distressed properties.