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Home Buying Black Banks Aren't Lending To Black People: What Now?

Banks Aren't Lending To Black People: What Now?

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investigation on redlining by the Center for Investigative Reporting shows that even when income, neighborhood and several other factors are considered, banks tend to deny home loans to Blacks at a considerably higher rate than whites. If you still believe that Black owned banks are unnecessary or optional, you need to strongly reconsider. Redlining is an old practice that, in many ways, created the modern American ghetto. Certain neighborhoods were circled on city maps and banks along with the federal government explicitly avoided investing in them — and you could probably guess that Black people generally lived in those neighborhoods. Redlining was outlawed years ago but based on the data, it lives on. Some banks are especially bad. TD Bank, according to government data, denied a larger percentage of Black and Latino applicants than any other big U.S. bank in 2015 and 2016. In that time, TD Bank turned away 54 percent of African Americans would-be homebuyers  –  the industry averages was 16 percent. The Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) was passed in 1977 to compel banks to lend to low and moderate-income communities. Banks are examined regularly to see if they are fulfilling their CRA obligations and of late, many are passing with flying colors. But it’s not because they are extending credit to Blacks in these communities. Whites seeking to gentrify historically Black neighborhoods are taking advantage of loan products intended for low and moderate-income communities and in doing so are helping banks satisfy their CRA requirements. It is a cruel irony that the same legislation passed to facilitate investment into neighborhoods where people of color live is now facilitating the removal of those people.   [caption id="attachment_5982" align="aligncenter" width="680"] The St. Luke Penny Savings Bank in Richmond was one of the first black-owned banks in the United States (1903)[/caption] Before CRA there was redlining. Before redlining there was codified segregation. None of this is new. Today we seem content begging White institutions to be more benevolent but in the past we exercised power. Through every form of discrimination, the Black community was upheld by Black owned banks. Black banks have made homeownership a reality for Black families for generations. Black banks have always provided loans for Black entrepreneurs to start their businesses. Black banks were making loans to Black people when no one else would and now we are all too happy to abandon them for financial institutions that clearly do not care to invest in Black communities. These most recent revelations about redlining should be a signal to us –it’s time to come on home. What is stopping so many of us from banking Black though? The ugly truth is we desire progress but not at the price of being inconvenienced. Period. Our history as a people is one that embraced inconvenience today for the promise of a better tomorrow for our children. Today we are under the illusion that Black progress can be had, free from inconvenience. It was inconvenient for Black maids and cooks to walk miles each day during the Montgomery Bus Boycott but they did it for the promise of tomorrow. In 2018, many of us won’t drive a little further to a Black owned bank, hoping we can live in convenience and the TD Banks of the world will somehow find a new love for Black people. Buying and banking Black won’t always be convenient. We can live in complete convenience and continue to see banks discriminate against us but I choose freedom, even if it requires me to drive a bit further. Click below to see a list of Black-owned Banks; Join One Today!

LIST OF ALL BLACK-OWNED BANKS

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D'Juan Hopewell
I care about Black Power. Period. Currently working on creating jobs and funding new startups on the South Side of Chicago and writing here and there at HopewellThought.com. Follow me @HopewellThought.
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