Saturday, June 14, 2008

The Repercussions of Latinos Losing Their Home to Foreclosure


By Bill Arce, RealEstateLatino.com
6/14/08 Jacksonville, FL.

The staggering impact of all of the foreclosures on families, neighborhood stability, and the economy as a whole, continues to reveal itself as the tsunami of foreclosures continues to mount despite efforts by the federal government, non-profits organizations and industry players to alleviate its impact. Latino families are not exempt; in fact, a new research done by the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) estimates that 8 percent of Latino families will face foreclosure because of high-cost subprime mortgages and predatory lending.

Studies have shown that a big percentage of Latino’s wealth is sitting on their home equity. This represents the biggest asset (their home), for these families. It also represents the only way to access capitol to invest in small business, pay for college or simply to support other family members. Home prices are likely to drop even more in communities with high concentration of foreclosure, making equity vanish on many Latino homes and subsequently their opportunity to create wealth.

For most Latinos, the process of losing their home to foreclosure does not begin when they stop paying their monthly mortgage payments. Unfortunately, sometimes, it’s a result of wrong advice or they fell victims of predatory practices by an unethical real estate agent or loan officer. In RealEstateLatino.com (REL), we are doing our share by incorporating bilingual resources and information in our online real estate community, so our clients can learn to avoid foreclosure and common foreclosure rescue scams.

Trying to purchase the first home is without a doubt one of the most vulnerable times for many homebuyers, especially if English is in fact, his or her second language. It is our goal as ethical professionals, to make sure that all our clients will receive the best service possible in today’s real estate industry, and for that, we train all our affiliated partners before referring them any leads. Our “Impeccable Ethical Behavior” is more that just a business tagline; it is our way to show our commitment in sustaining Latino Homeownership.

In REL’s ethical training course, agents can discover a new approach to better serving our community that is the REL way. We understand that we must establish trust between our online community and its clients. We do this by supporting all their real estate needs without asking anything in return. When they are ready to purchase a home, we have our certified agents’ guide them throughout the entire home-buying process, making sure our client’s rights are always top priority for our agents.

Now is the time to act. As real estate professionals, we must work together to protect our communities from unethical predatory behaviors that consequently can end up in foreclosures. If you are an agent looking for professional support, training, or a Latino organization committed to Latino Homeownership, look no further. The National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professional (NAHREP) it the right place to be. With membership of more than 14,000 members all across the country, our organization is assisting Latinos like no other organization in the housing industry. Go to http://www.nahrep.org/ today, and look for a local chapter in our area and become a member. The benefits are many, but the desire and dedication to give back to our communities are like none other.

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