April 7, 2021
First, Nissan doubles down on subprime lending. Now it’s willing to pay dealers more money when customers take out longer terms. This is the new plan Nissan has laid out for dealers, according to a report from Cars Direct. Click here to read more.
March 27, 2021
Because a house is usually a family’s biggest financial commitment, the mortgage score is one of the most important. It helps determine whether you qualify for a home loan and what rate you pay… Unlike most of your credit scores, the mortgage score is based on a formula that hasn’t changed much in two decades… The problem with the old formula is that it doesn’t reflect some of the more consumer-friendly changes that have been introduced in the new formulas for other credit scores. Read more here.
March 18, 2021
A new study from the real estate company Redfin shows how racist housing policies have made Black neighborhoods more vulnerable to flooding than white ones. Meanwhile, Redfin is accused of helping keep those same neighborhoods segregated. Click here to read more.
March 18, 2021
A decade ago, George Willborn, a Black radio personality and comedian, reached a tentative deal to buy a $1.7 million, 8,000-square-foot house in Chicago’s Bridgeport neighborhood.
But the White sellers refused to sign the contract, he said, even though Willborn had made the highest offer. Click here to read more.
March 15, 2021
A new Redfin report details how Americans – many of whom are people of color – living in formerly redlined neighborhoods are more likely to see their homes jeopardized by water damage. Click here to read more.
American Rescue Plan Act legislation is a big deal for Fort Bend County. Here’s where local leaders say the money will go: (Houston Chronicle)
March 12, 2021
The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, signed into law by President Joe Biden on Thursday, has allocated $1.9 trillion in COVID-19 relief aid, much of which will be handed directly to state and local authorities to bring swift aid to municipalities and school districts. Click here to read more.
March 15, 2021
The idea of credit is simple — and old. You want something that you can’t offer anything for at the moment, so you work something out with the vendor. You’ll take the item now, but reimburse them, plus a little extra for their trouble, at a later date.
In centuries past, these interactions might have been done in various ways, including bartering; more recently, credit was often contingent on knowing who it was that a person was effectively borrowing from, adding a layer of the personal to a professional interaction. Today, consumer credit is a titanic industry, complete with products and services marketed and sold for impressive profit — it’s a far cry from the relationship you have with your neighbor who owns the local grocery store. And whether or not you’re considered a viable credit risk has nothing to do with your long-standing relationship with that grocery store-owning neighbor, but is rather based on an inscrutable mix of credit-reporting algorithms. No wonder the most common reaction we have about our credit score is: “Why?” Click here to read more.
March 10, 2021
The Senate voted 66-34 on Wednesday to confirm President Biden’s nomination of Rep. Marcia L. Fudge (D-Ohio) as secretary of housing and urban development, making her the first Black woman to lead the agency in more than four decades. Click here to read more.
March 10, 2021
If Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio) is confirmed as housing Secretary on Wednesday as expected, she’ll be confronting a cascade of crises: millions of people facing eviction amid a pandemic, a rise in homelessness, soaring housing prices worsening a years-long affordable housing crunch.
But when Fudge reports for work at the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Brutalist headquarters in Southwest D.C. — what her predecessor Ben Carson called the “ugliest building” in the city — she’ll also be taking over an agency that is itself in crisis. Click here to read more.
February 28, 2021
Nassau and Suffolk counties — as part of housing reform initiatives — have added staff to investigate and litigate discrimination complaints and established public education workshops, but they have not included what some experts said is a critical element: an undercover testing program.
Lisa Rice, president and chief executive of the National Fair Housing Alliance in Washington, D.C., said a “robust” fair housing program needs several elements, including testing, at all levels of government. She said testing is “one of the main pillars” of strong fair housing enforcement. Read more here.
February 17, 2021
This is the fourth time Kennetha has been homeless.
She and her husband have five kids, the youngest of whom is just 8. They’ve been threatened with truancy for keeping their cameras off during remote learning — a grace they hoped would spare themselves some privacy over their living situation. At 37, Kennetha is haunted by an unfinished bachelor’s degree that has left her nothing but debt. Digging herself out of a financial hole has felt like a full-time job. Being without a stable home doesn’t help. Click here to read more.
February 13, 2021
Despite the progress made from the Fair Housing Act of 1968, housing has yet to be treated as a human right – and U.S. discriminatory practices in housing continue to create barriers for marginalized groups in this country who desire to have a place where they can thrive and feel safe.
In a move that supports housing rights for all, the Biden-Harris administration this week announced that the Fair Housing Act will be enforced in cases on housing discrimination based on sexual orientation and identity. Click here to read more.
February 9, 2021
A large partnership of housing and civil rights organizations reached out on Monday to congressional leaders advocating for further relief for homeowners in the next COVID-19 stimulus package. Click here to read more.
February 9, 2021
When Carlyle Smith moved from Florida to Washington, D.C. in 2011 for a job opportunity, he was determined to make the city his new home. But after five years, a series of health challenges had put him behind on his bills, and he found himself moving between homeless shelters and sleeping on floors. Click here to read more.
After a campaign full of questions, advancing racial equality has been a foundation of Biden’s presidency so far (The Washington Post)
February 4, 2021
Throughout the Democratic presidential primary, Joe Biden faced criticism from opponents over his record on policies affecting Black Americans, and his habit of making gaffes when talking about Black people reared its head a few times. All the while, he was vocal about wanting to pursue racial justice for Black Americans and was the clear front-runner all along. Read more here.
January 30, 2021
Homeownership has been on the rise over the past few years even during the COVID-19 pandemic, but a deeper look at who is able to become a homeowner reveals significant racial and economic gaps. With a growing recognition in Washington of this disparity and a renewed focus on increasing financial security for Black and Hispanic families, policymakers and industry have the opportunity to correct inequities and sustainably increase minority homeownership. Read more here.
January 28, 2021
Home may be where the heart is, but playing with a seller’s emotions could lead to trouble.
In competitive housing markets, agents sometimes encourage buyers to write “love letters” in hopes of swaying the seller to choose their bid. But experts are increasingly warning that these missives could lead to discrimination. Click here to read more.
January 26, 2021
The Memphis Director of Housing and Community Development believes the president’s executive order is a step in the right direction.
Director Paul Young said housing problems are nothing new to Memphis but now is the time to change it. Click here to read more.
January 26, 2021
Nearly a week into his administration, President Joe Biden is focused on creating a path toward equity after inheriting a deeply divided nation.
After picking the most racially diverse Cabinet in US history, Biden jump-started his efforts by proposing a sweeping immigration overhaul, disbanding the 1776 commission and reversing a Trump-era ban on most transgender Americans joining the military. Click here to read more.
January 25, 2021
As President Joe Biden begins his term of office, the nation and much of the world are waiting and watching to see how his promises become policies and practices that relieve long-term and widespread suffering. Click here to read more.