Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Human Development and Family Studies

Department name when degree awarded

Family, Consumer, and Human Development

Committee Chair(s)

Lucy Delgadillo


Lucy Delgadillo


Jean Lown


Maria Norton


The purpose of this study was to examine housing, demographic, and economic characteristics that are present in neighborhoods with high rates of mortgage default. In addition, the effect of minority percentage was studied in neighborhoods with high rates of default. Defaulted properties recorded in 2003-2004 in Weber County were geo-coded and assigned into one of 42 census tracts in Weber County. Descriptive statistics then profiled the characteristics of the census tracts. Correlations were used to determine which characteristics had statistical significance with mortgage default rates as well as minority percentage. Logistic regression was conducted to create a model describing the characteristics of neighborhoods that have high rates of default.

The findings from the analysis show that mortgage defaults in Weber County occurred mostly in two well-defined housing markets. The first housing market is found in census tracts with low minorities, newer homes, higher priced homes, more use of second mortgages and home equity loans, more self-employed households, more dependents, and more vacant homes. The second housing market is described as census tracts with high minority percentages, fewer number of dependents, older and lower value of homes, and fewer second mortgages and home equity loans.

The results show that the two housing markets that experienced mortgage default in 2003-2004 are different in their needs and possible prevention strategies. Educators can use this information to help target at-risk neighborhoods for education on horneownership and pre-purchase counseling, therefore strengthening communities.