SEATTLE, Jan. 16, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan will answer questions from mortgage applicants, home buyers and homeowners next Wednesday, Jan. 22, at 10 a.m. PST/1 p.m. EST in a live-streamed event. The town hall meeting, titled Building Equality in Housing, will be broadcast from Zillow Headquarters in Seattle, and will include an introduction from the National Urban League.
Zillow Chief Economist Stan Humphries will moderate the discussion. Questions will come from a live audience, as well as from social media. To submit questions, Tweet to @Zillow using the hashtag #BuildingEquality. More information can be found at www.zillow.com/education/HUD.
In conjunction with the event, Zillow and the National Urban League researched trends on minority access to housing, outlining the different experiences between races when seeking a mortgage, buying a home and during homeownership. The report, available here, discovered a number of instances in which minority access to mortgages and homeownership experiences, particularly among blacks and Hispanics, differs greatly from white experiences.
"It's been more than 50 years since Dr. King fought for equality, yet it is apparent that the American Dream of homeownership is not equally shared by all, even today," Humphries said. "Our research shows that minority homebuyers are encountering difficulties that often aren't shared by white homebuyers, and that even after they achieve the dream, they are less likely to see a similar return on their investment. This is an excellent opportunity to learn from Secretary Donovan what the Obama Administration is doing to address these issues."
"As an organization whose legacy and mission enable communities of color to secure economic power and civil rights, the National Urban League has long promoted homeownership as the key to upward economic mobility and financial security," said Marc H. Morial, president and CEO of the National Urban League. "'Building Equality in Housing' is a wake-up call about the hard work that remains to ensure that all Americans achieve the dream of homeownership and begin to build real and lasting wealth."
Findings from the research report include the following:
- Blacks and Hispanics are less likely to apply for a mortgage. While blacks make up 12.1 percent of the U.S. population, they filed 6 percent of all mortgage purchase applications in 2012. Hispanics make up 17.3 percent of the population, but filed 9.4 percent applications.
- In contrast, whites make up 63 percent of the U.S. population and filed 64.8 percent of purchase applications.
- Blacks and Hispanics are much more likely to apply for an FHA mortgage for a home purchase than a conventional loan – more than half of black applicants (57.4 percent) and 60.3 percent of Hispanic applicants applied for an FHA loan.
- In contrast, less than one-third (30.1 percent) of white applicants apply for an FHA loan.
- Blacks and Hispanics are much more likely than whites to have their mortgage application denied. When applying for a conventional loan, black applicants are 2.4 times and Hispanic applicants are 1.98 times more likely than white applicants to be denied. Much of this difference is attributable to the different resources and qualifications of minority versus white applicants, and the research was not able to examine the extent to which discrimination was at play in lending decisions.
- After homeownership is achieved, neighborhoods with high minority populations have faced more overall depreciation since home values peaked. Since peak, home values fell 23.3 percent in neighborhoods with a high black population and 32.6 percent in neighborhoods with a high Hispanic population. By contrast, home values in neighborhoods with high white populations fell 13.4 percent, and in neighborhoods with high Asian populations fell 0.6 percent.
About Zillow, Inc.
Zillow, Inc. (NASDAQ: Z) operates the leading real estate and home-related information marketplaces on mobile and the Web, with a complementary portfolio of brands and products that help people find vital information about homes, and connect with the best local professionals. Zillow's brands serve the full lifecycle of owning and living in a home: buying, selling, renting, financing, remodeling and more. In addition, Zillow offers a suite of tools and services to help local real estate, mortgage, rental and home improvement professionals manage and market their businesses. Welcoming 64 million unique users during its peak month in 2013, the Zillow, Inc. portfolio includes Zillow.com®, Zillow Mobile, Zillow Mortgage Marketplace, Zillow Rentals, Zillow Digs™, Postlets®, Diverse Solutions®, Agentfolio®, Mortech®, HotPads™ and StreetEasy®. The company is headquartered in Seattle.
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About the National Urban League
The National Urban League is a historic civil rights organization dedicated to economic empowerment in order to elevate the standard of living in historically underserved urban communities. Founded in 1910 and headquartered in New York City, the National Urban League spearheads the efforts of its local affiliates through the development of direct service programs; and through the public policy research and advocacy activities of the National Urban League Policy Institute in Washington, DC. Today, there are nearly 100 local Urban League affiliates in 36 states and the District of Columbia, providing direct services that impact and improve the lives of more than 2 million people nationwide.