America has a black property problem that needs more of our attention.
Fewer black families are buying homes and are forced to rent, pushing the black homeownership gap to its highest rates since the 1960s, when private race discrimination was legal.
According to the Urban Institute, since 2001, black homeownership has seen the most dramatic decline of any racial or ethnic group, down 5%, compared to a 1% drop for white families. and an increase for Hispanic and “Other” families (primarily Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders).
Due to a long history of discriminatory lending practices called ‘redlining,‘ Black property and wealth has always been a struggle.
Housing discrimination has been banned for more than 50 years, but black homeownership rates are at the same level as when the Fair Housing Act 1968 was successful.
According to US Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination in housing because of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, marital status, or disability.
It also makes it illegal to stalk people because of their race, color, religion, sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation), disability, marital status or of their national origin. This prohibits, among other things, sexual harassment.
But even with all these protections, the problem continues to grow.
Black homeowners face huge challenges with credit, mortgage rates, lending practices and income.
A study of the US Housing Service found that black buyers are more likely to have higher mortgage rates than white buyers of not only the same income level, but lower income levels.
Blacks are also more than twice as likely to be rejected for mortgages compared to white buyers.
Even though the black ownership gap has fluctuated over the years, it remains stable between 20% and 30% compared to their white counterparts.
Why is home ownership so important? Home ownership can provide wealth for generations. It can be passed on or sold as an investment property. Retirement is also a key factor. Being able to live rent-free after you retire will save you a lot of money and protect your financial security. Either way, black people need to have access to property. It is an essential path in the creation of wealth for future generations to come.
Below are 10 cities with the largest black homeownership gaps in America:
1. Portland, ME (24.4% spread)
2. Scranton, PA (22.6% gap)
3. Madison, WI (19.6% deviation)
4. Des Moines, IA (17.7% spread)
5. Minneapolis, MN (17.3% gap)
6. Worcester, MA (16.9% spread)
7. North Port, Florida (16.9% spread)
8. Syracuse, NY (16.3% spread)
9. Grand Rapids, Michigan (16.2% spread)
10. Pittsburgh, PA (15.8% gap)
What is Fair Housing Month and why is it important for black people?
Why do black families pretend to be white to sell their house?