In a city with more than 3.3 million housing units, what does it mean for the rest of us that 3,000 properties went into foreclose in the 3rd quarter of last year, or even that 17,000 or so went into default in all of 2010?

A new report suggests it could mean a great deal: Turns out housing code violations are higher in buildings located close to multi-unit residences that have gone into foreclosure.

The research from the Citizens Housing and Planning Council, funded by Enterprise, looks at buildings that are over-mortgaged or have gone into foreclosure.

Over mortgaging has been one impact of the private equity craze, in which real estate investors purchased at premium prices buildings in low- and moderate-income neighborhoods, hoping to raise rents, sell their stake and turn a profit. In several cases, the sale price was so out of line with the rent rolls that the speculators began to sink under their debt. Maintenance often suffered. Some of these buildings end up in foreclosure, but the lead-up to default can be just as tough on tenants.

Read more in City Limits.