The National Association of Real Estate Brokers (NAREB), the country’s oldest minority real estate trade association sponsored National Open House Weekend, last week. The event not only celebrated National Homeownership Month, but also encouraged Black Americans to consider homeownership as the first step toward building wealth.
“Black Americans are still reluctant to enter the real estate market. Anecdotal as well as factual reports indicate that Black Americans bore the brunt of the major economic downturn that stripped away home equity, and in far too many instances countless loss of homes due to foreclosure,” said Ron Cooper, president of NAREB. Industry and government reports also indicate that homeownership rates for Black Americans remain at about 42 percent, down from a high of 49 percent in 2006. In comparison, the current homeownership rate for non-Hispanic whites is approximately 74 percent.
NAREB’s goal is to generate two million new Black homeowners in five years,
“First, we have to raise awareness about the challenges confronting our communities; then develop and implement workable strategies to reverse this stagnating Black homeownership rate that’s now hovering at 42%, down from a high of 49% in 2006. In comparison, homeownership rates for non-Hispanic whites is approximately 74 percent,” Cooper added.
“NAREB intends to rebuild wealth in the Black American community through consumer education that provides consumers with correct information before entering the home buying process. We know the value of homeownership and how it significantly contributes to individual wealth building and community stabilization. Restoring confidence in homeownership is the key to building, or re-building economic security,” Cooper added.
The National Open House Weekend events were designed to help prospective homebuyers make informed decisions. with Home buying counselors, financial services representatives and real estate professionals present answering consumer questions about the importance of homeownership as a wealth building tool.
The National Association of Real Estate Brokers (NAREB) was formed in 1947 out of a need to secure the right to equal housing opportunities regardless of race, creed, or color. NAREB has 90 chapters located nationwide and publishes annually The State of Housing in Black America (SHIBA) Report.