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WHEREAS, discriminatory practices in the areas of home appraisals and mortgage lending in African American and some other minority communities have an adverse impact on the household wealth, neighborhood stability and upkeep, and the ability to save for retirement by the residents of these communities; and
WHEREAS, homeownership plays an integral role in a household's accumulation of wealth since nationally the primary residence represents a significant portion (thirty percent) of the total assets held by households; and
WHEREAS, discriminatory home appraisal and mortgage lending practices present economic barriers that impede the ability of African American homeowners in particular to fully benefit from owning their own home; and
WHEREAS, the data from thorough investigations of appraisal companies and mortgage lenders show that property values in the predominately African American communities of this nation continue to be depressed because of unfair mortgage lending and appraisal practices; and
WHEREAS, research based on a comparison of home values to homeowner incomes in the nation's 100 largest metropolitan areas shows that homes in majority black neighborhoods do not appreciate as much as homes in overwhelmingly white neighborhoods and that the black-owned homes are valued eighteen percent less than the white-owned homes; and
WHEREAS, many real estate agents can cite examples of obtaining sale contracts for homes in African American communities from qualified, ready, willing and able buyers only to learn that the appraiser and mortgage company determined that the house was not worth the price the buyer was willing to pay, where the lender has then stated that the price must be reduced by tens of thousands of dollars before they will approve the loan, causing depressed home values; and
WHEREAS, homeowners in majority African American communities continue to suffer financial loss from artificially depressed property valuations; and
WHEREAS, the depressed home prices have caused an invasion of corporate investors, turning once beautiful owner-occupied communities into neighborhoods full of rental properties, substantially owned by non-residents; and
WHEREAS, this trend has caused many negative side-effects in commercial development, school performance, property tax base and public safety in majority African American communities; and
WHEREAS, property owners who are upside down in their loans are trapped in their homes because they have collectively lost billions of dollars in wealth that normally would be used for retirement, relocation or to leave to the next generation; and
WHEREAS, residents must demand that our government officials act and/or support efforts in taking the required corrective actions to end the practices which can most accurately be labeled "redlining" of communities with populations predominately people of color; and
WHEREAS, Redlining appears to be widespread in all American inner cities, and this coordinated disinvestment plays an important role in cities' decline, contributes significantly to overall population losses, contributes to the deterioration of cities' housing stock, and plays an important role in America's urban crisis; and
WHEREAS, individual property owners in minority communities are legally entitled to receive just remedies and compensation for the massive loss of wealth suffered during the Great Recession, and this loss is exacerbated by homeowners who are unable to obtain refinancing of their loans due to unfair practices by appraisers and mortgage lenders.
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) calls for the full enforcement of Fair Housing laws and that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) should be fully funded to ensure compliance; and
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that the NAACP will urge all of its units to work to identify and assist victims of discriminatory appraisal and mortgage lending practices, following NAACP procedures, and take action necessary to expose and halt those who engage in unfair, discriminatory appraisal and mortgage lending practices.