The following is excerpted from a new report by Community Capital Management (CCM), a certified Green Business Network member. CCM manages impact investing portfolios to promote community development and contribute to positive environmental outcomes. Read CCM’s full report on the Black homeownership gap here.
For millions, owning a home remains at the heart of the American dream. Most American renters — 72% — say they want to buy a home at some point in the future instead of continuing to rent, according to the Pew Research Center. But many Black Americans have been left out. Black Americans struggle with a deep wealth gap, in fact, recent research shows that only 44% of Black Americans own a home compared to 74% of white Americans. Homeownership is important for accumulating and passing on wealth, which means the trailing homeownership rate further impacts Black Americans’ ability to build generational wealth over time.
Mending the Black homeownership gap in America is not going to happen overnight. It is going to take years to make a profound impact on this serious issue, and the pandemic has only hurt an already fragile situation. In 2019, the National Association of Realtors laid out a five-year plan for how the real estate industry can step up to provide support in increasing the number of Black American homeowners. It included building more homes to increase supply, increasing access to down payment assistance, strengthening the Federal Housing Administration’s loan program, and expanding alternative credit scoring models.
In 2019, The Urban Institute also published a five-point framework for reducing the Black Homeownership Gap calling for:
1. Advancing policy solutions at the local level
2. Tackling housing supply constraints and affordability
3. Promoting an equitable and accessible housing finance system
4. Accelerating outreach and counseling for renters and mortgage-ready millennials
5. Focusing on sustainable home ownership and preservation
End the Black homeownership gap will take commitment, coordination, and efforts from a variety of resources, including the capital markets, public and private partnerships, government agencies, developers, and more, along with a shift in our views of how every American deserves fair housing.
What is CCM’s role in Black Homeownership?
CCM’s Minority Community Advancement Racial Empowerment Strategy (also known as Minority CARES), launched in June 2020, allows investors the opportunity to direct their fixed income capital to advance racial equality, tackle social disparities, and help build an economy that provides opportunities for everyone from affordable housing to access to capital. Minority CARES anticipates investing $2 billion over the next five years in market-rate bonds that align with the values of social justice, improvement in the lives of those in historically marginalized communities, and increased economic opportunity for people of color.
CCM also has a new investment opportunity to be launched soon with a focus specifically on affordable homeownership for low-to-moderate income and minority borrowers. Visit ccminvests.com to learn more in the months ahead.
Support a green economy and initiatives like Black homeownership through Green America programs like Get a Better Bank.