Event looks to close gap between white and minority homeownersby Jessica Mador, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — The Minnesota Home Ownership Center is hosting a summit Monday, Nov. 9 on how to close the gap between white and minority homeowners in the state.
While the state as a whole has high rates of homeownership, Minnesota now has the 7th largest gap between white and minority homeowners in the nation.
Julie Gugin, executive director of the Home Ownership Center, said many of the housing programs rolled out by the Obama administration are helping Minnesota recover some of the homeownership progress that was lost during the financial meltdown.
"Those programs are targeted at the areas that have been hardest hit by foreclosure," she said.
Gugin said one focus will be on how lenders and realtors can change the way they do business in communities of color. She said those communities have been inordinately and disproportionately impacted by the foreclosure crisis.
"That is a direct reflection of the fact that those communities, particularly in the urban cores of Minneapolis and St. Paul, were targeted for subprime lending," she said.
Subprime lending practices played a key role at the beginning of the current economic crisis.
The Emerging Markets Homeownership Initiative Summit runs from 8-11:30 a.m. at the University of Minnesota Continuing Education and Conference Center in St. Paul.