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Is your foreclosure causing your neighbors health concerns?

It's well known that stress causes health issues. High blood pressure is one most people think of when they consider health issues caused by stress. Foreclosure certainly can be something that causes stress for homeowners. However, did you know that a foreclosure could raise your neighbor's blood pressure?

According to a recent study published in Circulation, a journal from the American Heart Association, foreclosures could affect more than just the homeowner. Neighbors of those going through a foreclosure could have an increased risk of high blood pressure.

The study's 1,750 participants were tracked from 1987 to 2008. These participants were actually part of a larger study that started back in the 1940s. That larger study was done to figure out what factors affected cardiovascular health. Those participants were assessed every few years.

The participants in the smaller study were also assessed. The lead author of the study reported that foreclosures that happen within 100 meters of someone's home caused an increase in the top number of blood pressure readings, also known as systolic blood pressure.

The increase was 1.71 millimeters of mercury for each foreclosure within 100 meters. This increase is about the same as the increase one would experience as he or she aged three years.

The increase in blood pressure was more likely if the home was sitting vacant for a long period of time when a bank seized it. If the property sold quickly, though, there did not seem to be an increase in blood pressure noted.

While this may not be as important to some people, as they are dealing with a foreclosure, it does show how difficult a foreclosure can be. However, there may be legal options available for homeowners who may be close to losing their homes. An experienced bankruptcy attorney can provide information about possible options available to homeowners facing foreclosure.

Source: Washington Post, "Foreclosures may raise neighbors’ blood pressure, study finds" Dina ElBoghdady, May. 12, 2014

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