Press Releases

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Houston Minority Business Enterprise Center Opens its Doors in Downtown Houston

NCRC extends its small business development initiatives to Houston via newly opened Houston Minority Business Enterprise Center Houston, TX— The National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) announced today the opening of the Houston Minority Business Enterprise Center (HMBEC). Located downtown in the Houston Technology Center at 410 Pierce Street, the HMBEC will provide training and technical …

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NCRC Announces RFP for Initiative to Empower Older Adults

 Addressing economic insecurity of older adults through regional organizing and advocacy groups

Washington, DC — The National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC), with support from Atlantic Philanthropies, is pleased to announce its 2011 Request for Proposals (RFP) for National Neighbors Silver, an initiative to support and empower older adults nationwide.

As the United States suffers from historically high rates of foreclosure and unemployment, older adults across the nation are not only more numerous than past generations, but also more susceptible to financial insecurity and instability. Many older adults who lost their jobs during the economic crisis have been pushed out of the workforce and into early retirement.

“Many older Americans face new challenges in this economic environment. The sharp reduction in the value of most seniors’ primary asset — their home — means that many are now especially susceptible to financial insecurity. The National Neighbors Silver initiative will support participating regional organizations to directly tackle the root causes of the unique economic challenges faced by America’s older citizens,” said John Taylor, president and CEO of NCRC.

FCIC Report Puts Blame Where It Belongs: On Wall Street & Regulators

 Going Forward, Two Big Lessons Learned: Don’t Put the Fox in the Henhouse, and Regulation Matters

Washington, DC — John Taylor, President and CEO of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition, released this statement today about the Financial GSE picCrisis Inquiry Commission report and proposals to return the government-sponsored entities to the private sector without affordable housing goals:

This report puts the blame where it belongs on Wall Street and the federal regulators who looked the other way. It also puts to rest the myth that making capital available to low or moderate-income borrowers was a cause of the crisis.

While the report may be a day late and a dollar short, the lessons going forward are that regulators need the authority and the resources to stay on top of financial innovations and make sure risk taking does not become reckless. The other very important lesson is that regulation matters when it comes to protecting consumers.  There is an appropriate and necessary federal role in ensuring access to capital and markets for nontraditional borrowers, which is why the affordable housing goals must remain a part of the mission of the government-sponsored entities.

The Hardest Hit Fund Reaches DC Residents via Newly Launched HomeSaver Program

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NCRC’s Housing Counseling Network joins DC program to provide foreclosure prevention counseling to the unemployed

Washington, DC— the National Community Reinvestment Coalition’s Housing Counseling Network (NCRC HCN), a Housing and Urban Development (HUD) certified housing counseling organization, announced that it will provide housing counseling under the District of Columbia Housing Finance Agency’s (DCHFA) HomeSaver program. The DCHFA program will provide foreclosure prevention to an estimated 1,000 unemployed DC homeowners, and is funded by the $1.5 billion dollar Hardest Hit Fund Initiative created by the Obama administration last year.

While HAMP Program Continues to Fail, Treasury Hides the Ball

Washington, DC – A new report from the Congressional Oversight Panel shows that the Administration’s leading foreclosure prevention program, the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), will modify less than 5% of the loans that will go into foreclosure by program end. An estimated 8 to 13 million foreclosures will take place by 2012. The report …

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NCRC Calls For Federal Investigation Into Lenders’

NCRC Calls For Federal Investigation Into Lenders’ Refusal to Make Loans to Working Class Families

Files 22 Complaints With HUD Over Lenders’ Unfair & Discriminatory Policies

WASHINGTON, DC — The National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) today called on federal agencies and banking regulators to investigate the nation’s largest Federal Housing Administration (FHA) approved lenders for possible violations of federal housing rules by refusing to offer loans to qualified Americans to the FHA policy of a minimum credit score of 580 and above with a 3.5% downpayment.

A recent NCRC investigation found that the majority of top FHA lenders failed to offer applications for federal-guaranteed loans to potentially qualified borrowers with credit scores below 620 or 640, even though FHA guarantees loans with credit scores to 580. These lenders have policies that establish “credit overlays” above the FHA policy, with minimum credit score requirements as high as 640. One-third of all Americans have credit scores under 620.

“Critical to our nation’s economic progress is the ability of homeowners to get quality refinancing, and for homebuyers to reclaim vacant houses by accessing quality mortgage credit, ” said John Taylor, president & CEO of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition.

“The decision by some banks to not follow the FHA’s policy is cutting qualified borrowers off from accessing credit, and in doing so, causing harm to their ability to prosper, build wealth and for our economy to grow. And this decision is arbitrary, because the loans are 100% guaranteed, whether the borrower’s credit score is 580 or 780. That means the loans with lower credit scores don’t pose additional risk to the company, so there’s no legitimate business defense for this across-the-board practice. A lender is only at risk if they fraudulently or improperly originated the loan, against FHA’s underwriting criteria. As is the case across the secondary market, in that situation, the lender can be forced to buy back the bad loan,” said Taylor.

NCRC Files “Landmark” Fair Housing Complaints

An investigation by the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) discovered that a majority of the top 50 FHA lenders have instituted policies that limit access to credit to working families in low- and moderate-income communities, and in communities of color, the very same communities that have been most harmed by the greed and malfeasance of …

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Rev. Jesse Jackson, Faith Leaders Call For Congressional Action on Foreclosure Crisis, Bank Lending

                Impact from Foreclosure Crisis Expanding, Churches Feeling the Pain As Thanksgiving Comes Washington, DC – Dozens of faith leaders today joined Rev. Jesse Jackson, Sr., in calling for congressional action to address the foreclosure crisis and to strengthen and enforce the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), in order to stabilize communities nationwide that have been …

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NCRC Partners with HOPE LoanPort™ to Assist Homeowners

Organization Praises Web Portal as Complete Solution for Submitting Loan Modification Applications (WASHINGTON, DC) – HOPE LoanPort™ announced today that the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC), an association of more than 600 community-based organizations, is endorsing its web-based loan modification portal. Both the NCRC and many of its members are already using the groundbreaking new …

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NCRC Urges Fed To Stimulate Economy By Demanding Principal Reductions

NCRC Urges Fed To Stimulate Economy By Demanding Principal Reductions On Its Loans Worth $1.1 Trillion Taylor Says Federal Government Has Power, Authority to Obtain Reductions on Majority of Mortgage Market Washington, DC – In its efforts to stimulate the economy, the Federal Reserve should demand that banks reduce the principal balances on $1.1 trillion …

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Federal Housing Probe On Target But Should Examine Loan Modifications

Washington, DC —  John Taylor, president & CEO of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition, issued this statement today in response to the Administration’s probe of mortgage servicers: “It was heartening to hear that the Obama Administration is investigating whether servicers are doing all they can to help homeowners avoid foreclosures, but their probe must include the abusive lending practices that led to the financial chaos that shattered our economy. The Administration should move quickly on the question of whether banks are doing what they must do and should do under housing laws to help borrowers because stemming foreclosures is key to ending the economic downturn. Foreclosures are the bane of our economic recovery, and we fail to see how a temporary national freeze will hurt the economy more than the foreclosures do. Nobody wants to freeze foreclosures on abandoned homes. And a foreclosure freeze gives us all the chance to counsel homeowners, work with lenders and servicers to fix the servicing pipeline, and keep responsible homeowners in their homes.

NCRC Supports Temporary National Moratorium on Foreclosures

Rubber stamp foreclosures continue pattern of disrespect for consumers’ rights and legal process, creating moral hazard for financial services industry

Washington, DC – In a letter to President Obama on Friday, the National Community Reinvestment Coalition joined dozens of other consumer and civil rights groups in a call for a temporary national moratorium on foreclosures, until an investigation can be completed to determine the extent to which consumers’ rights have been violated by servicers and lenders. NCRC also called on Congress and the Administration to pursue non-voluntary measures to resolve the foreclosure crisis.

“The rights of consumers have been treated as an afterthought by the financial industry,” said John Taylor, president & CEO of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition. “Allowing the industry to rubber stamp foreclosures, and continue with sloppy, extralegal practices promotes a ‘moral hazard’ that encourages abusive behavior. Not intervening to investigate and ensure that consumers are adequately protected in the foreclosure process sends a message that mortgage lending and servicing continues to be the Wild West, wherein the industry is free to do what they want, without consideration for the borrower.”

“We need to end the voluntary reliance on the industry to do the right thing with respect to homeowners. Three years of following this approach on the foreclosure crisis has largely failed. Congress and the Administration should take this opportunity to finally put in place something that puts an end to unnecessary foreclosures, rather than delaying them,” said Taylor.

Bill To Expand CRA to Wall Street Introduced

Washington, DC – With the strong backing of House Financial Services Chairman Barney Frank, legislation to expand the lending requirements of the Community Barney Frank pic Reinvestment Act (CRA) to Wall Street was introduced yesterday. Such an expansion has the potential to spur significant job creation by leveraging hundreds of billions of dollars in private investments in small businesses and communities, without spending tax dollars, said John Taylor, CEO and President of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition, which worked closely with Frank in writing the bill. A section-by-section analysis of the bill is available at www.ncrc.org.

Improving HMDA Data can be the Answer to Averting another Foreclosure Epidemic

delinquent bill picWashington, DC–On Friday, September 24th, NCRC will testify before Federal Reserve Board on making critical improvements to HMDA data, so that lenders can be held accountable for the types of loans they are issuing to communities.

“We are in an era of some of the most complicated mortgage products to-date and given the strain that bad mortgage loans have put on our economy, lenders should be examined with a microscope now more than ever. In the era of reckless and corrupt lending, it is crucial that HMDA actually does what it was enacted to do, which is identify discriminatory lending patterns and determine if financial institutions are meeting local housing needs,” said John Taylor, president and CEO of NCRC, in reaction to the Federal Reserve’s 2009 HMDA data report.

The recently enacted Dodd-Frank bill mandates significant improvements to HMDA data. NCRC calls upon the Federal Reserve Board and the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to expeditiously implement these improvements. In today’s release, the Federal Reserve Board states that the current HMDA data lacks information on credit scores, property values, and other factors necessary to fully account for disparities in racial access to affordable loans.

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