Report Shows Minorities Disproportionately Affected by Foreclosure Crisis

May 29, 2013

Rhode Island’s foreclosure crisis has taken a much higher toll on people of color than on whites, according to a report released Wednesday by the group DARE – Direct Action for Rights and Equality.  The report focuses on foreclosures in the capital city, where homeowners have lost tens of millions of dollars in wealth to foreclosed properties.

Between 2006 and 2012 Providence homeowners lost more than 200 million dollars in wealth due to the foreclosure crisis, according to “Wasted Wealth,” a report by the group Direct Action for Rights and Equality.

But the loss has not been spread out evenly. The report says the average white homeowner  lost  $1700, while the average person of color lost $2700.  DARE community organizer Christopher Rotondo says minorities lost more because they were targeted by the sellers of subprime loans, mortgages characterized by higher interest rates, poor quality collateral and higher risk.

"These loans that were unaffordable, that had very high interest rates, that were set up to fail -- a lot of the companies that actually pushed them initially have gone under or been sold off and disappeared – were pushed to communities of color in particular."

For several years DARE has been unsuccessfully pushing for legislation that would protect renters from being evicted from foreclosed properties until the bank that owns them sells them.

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