Black homeownership is lower than the national rate during the Great Depression.
By Tracey Edwards
The 2016 State of Housing in Black America (SHIBA) report indicated that the homeownership rate for blacks was only 41.7 percent, which is lower than the national homeownership rate during the Great Depression years of the 1930s. By contrast, the 2016 homeownership rate for non-Hispanic whites was 71.5 percent.
According to Francis Young, vice president of the Consolidated Board of Realtists, many black people are at a disadvantage because of the denial of equal access to mortgage credit and also because of a lack of knowledge of lending practices.
The Consolidated Board of Realtists was established in Los Angeles in 1949 by a group of young African American real estate brokers. Their purpose at that time was to combat the inequitable and prejudicial treatment of black brokers in the Los Angeles area.
The Consolidated Board of Realtists is a member of the National Association of Real Estate Brokers (NAREB), which has put in place a solution to the viability and stability in its recovery of black homeownership in the U.S. The NAREB has the goal to have two-million new black homeowners within the next five years. The Consolidated Board of Realtists supports this goal by teaching financial literacy to local residents.
The Consolidated Board of Realtists initiated the blueprint to home ownership in 2016 and will be rolling out the Homeownership Center at the Consolidated Realty Plaza, a black-owned facility and a historical site located in Baldwin Hills. This will be a learning center for people who are interested in homeownership.
“We educate the buyer about what their scores need to be, about what type of savings they need to have,” said Stan Jackson, a board member of Consolidated Board of Realtists. “The home-buying process has become a very complicated process. What we try to do is simplify it so that the buyer won’t be surprised when they find out what the requirements are.”
Besides financial literacy and home-buying workshops, the Consolidated Board of Realtists also works with local politicians and banks to resolve issues that affects black people. While Jackson pointed out that there are unfair lending practices, he did point out that many people need to make better decisions to qualify for loans.
“Some of the spending habits that we have, they have to be addressed,” he said. “That’s where education comes in.”
At the Homebuyer Center there will be scheduled hours open to the public, so that community members can come and ask real estate-related questions from a professional. People will be able to obtain help with the home-buying process by attending first-time buyer programs and seminars as well as getting advice from approved HUD counselors, appraisers, real estate brokers, loan officers, commercial property and investment specialists.
The Consolidated Board of Realtists will host the Real Estate Realtists Summit on Thursday, February 23, at the Ritz Carlton Marina Del Rey. This free event is recommended to anybody who is looking to purchase a home. Register for this event at www.realtistsummit.eventbrite.com.