Washington – Today, the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) released an analysis of home purchase and small business lending in Baltimore, Maryland, and the surrounding areas. The analysis reveals deep racial disparities in mortgage lending.
NCRC President and CEO John Taylor made the following statement:
“While many Americans take the ability to obtain a mortgage for granted, majority African American neighborhoods in Baltimore City are largely closed off from access to responsible credit and economic opportunity. These neighborhoods are lending deserts. This is part of a sad legacy of racial discrimination and segregation that continues to afflict the city.”
“Until our financial institutions make a full and genuine commitment that creditworthy borrowers, regardless of their skin color, will be able to access responsible credit, the economies in these neighborhoods will continue to deteriorate, and we will continue to have the circumstances you see in Baltimore, Ferguson, and elsewhere.”
Key findings of the report:
· There are very different patterns of lending in Baltimore City and the surrounding counties, with disinvestment in most of the city and affluence in the suburbs.
· In Baltimore City, race matters most in mortgage lending. Lending is greater in neighborhoods with larger white than African American populations, and there are tremendous disparities in home lending for African American and white residents.
· In the surrounding suburban counties, economic factors are the most useful in predicting home purchase lending activity.
· It is very difficult for borrowers of any income to be approved for mortgage loans in Baltimore City, where low- to moderate-income (LMI) census tracts are the majority. An LMI applicant is more likely to receive a mortgage loan in wealthier neighborhoods in Baltimore County.
In September, NCRC held the Maryland Reinvestment Summit in Baltimore, which featured keynote addresses by U.S. Congressman Elijah Cummings and Benjamin Jealous.