The six mega banks are not continuing to seriously maintain and sell their foreclosed units located in minority localities as per the findings of an investigation that was carried out for 9 months by National Fair Housing Alliance based in Washington DC ; it is a non-profit body that focuses on discrimination in the housing sector.

They have been finding out how the banks look after and try to sell their foreclosed units in nine metro regions. Their findings showed “overwhelming” and “troubling” proof that in the White neighbourhoods in this regard the banks are much more active. The findings allege gross violation of civil rights law of the federal government. The Blacks as well as the Latinos are disproportionately weighed down with the worst side of the national housing crisis.

green house small plasticShanna Smith of the alliance (president) said, “This is not about income. It is about race. These were consistent patterns in low-income communities, middle-income communities and upper-income neighbourhoods”. She further added who would like to live, no matter what their income level, next to a house covered with weeds and trash that breed rodents? None deserve this.

The investigation was completed last February. They studied 1,000 properties owned by the banks in those zip codes that had the worst numbers of foreclosure. These are supposed to be in the market for sale after the bank took over ownership following foreclose.

The REO (real-estate-owned) unit in the Black neighbourhoods had 42% more maintenance problems that could be viewed from the outside – tall grasses, dangling gutters etc. in comparison with White localities. In neighbourhoods of the Latinos and Blacks 34% more of the foreclosed units were covered with trash compared with the White areas; in these communities 82% more had the windows of these houses either boarded or broken in comparison with the neighbourhoods where the Whites lived.

In the White communities 33% more of the REOs flaunted profession for-sale signs that could be clearly seen from the outside. The signs in the Black and Latino neighbourhoods had rough signs made out our either plain paper or sometimes cardboard.

The exact number of REOs in America is difficult to gauge. In the middle of last year there were a minimum of 500,000 vacant REOs; it was expected that another 2 million would have been added by last January as per the findings of Federal Reserve.