Posts Tagged ‘homeownership’

HousingDiscrimination_blogpic_new

Homeownership represents financial security for Latino families and a better life as they work every day to achieve the American Dream.

Homeownership is great for Latino families and for society as a whole as it fosters investment in the community, as well as safe and stable neighborhoods.

For NCLR’s National Homeownership Network (NHN), this is an integral part of our mission.

NHN helps Latino families purchase a home and reduces the large homeownership gap between White and Latino owners.

Homeownership rates had been steadily increasing until the foreclosure crisis in 2007 hit. Since then, the rate of Latino homeowners has dropped significantly. According to the State of Hispanic Homeownership Report, in 2012, the rate of Latino homeownership was down to 46.1 percent.

More than five million homeowners in the United States are paying much more for their homes than they are worth.

Ironically, one of those homeowners is Sylvia Alvarez, who heads the Housing & Education Alliance, a leading housing counseling agency in Tampa, Fla., and an NCLR Affiliate.

Alvarez and her dedicated staff have helped many families escape unsustainable mortgages.

Alvarez is an ideal candidate for principal reduction, but she cannot get help because her mortgage is owned by Fannie Mae. Most of the largest banks have granted some families principal write-downs, understanding that reducing the principal on a home for a struggling homeowner is a win-win.

Families stay in their homes, continue to pay their mortgages, and stabilize the economy.

In his first congressional hearing since being confirmed last summer, Julián Castro, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, testified before the House Financial Services Committee today on his agency’s progress and accomplishments.

This hearing couldn’t come at a more critical time, given that Latino families are still struggling to rebuild the wealth they lost during the Great Recession.

Though an economic recovery is now under way, Latinos are not necessarily seeing improved outcomes in access to mortgage credit.

Just last year, Hispanic home-buyers made up only 6 percent of the conventional mortgage market, despite comprising 17 percent of the population.