50th Anniversary of the Fair Housing Act

Fair Housing Fact: BLOCKBUSTING, STEERING, AND REDLINING ARE VIOLATIONS OF THE FAIR HOUSING ACT. While perceived to have been actions taken in the past, research indicates that these practices may still occur.

BLOCKBUSTING is the practice of encouraging certain homeowners to sell their homes, often at a loss, by fomenting concern over racial minorities moving into their previously racially segregated neighborhood, thereby depressing real estate property values. A 2015 article on blockbusting and dynamics of neighborhood segregation can be found at: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022053115000393.

STEERING is the practice in which real estate brokers or lenders guide prospective home buyers towards or away from certain neighborhoods based on their race or other protected classes.

REDLINING is the practice of charging more for – or denying altogether – services such as banking, housing, insurance, etc. in certain areas. Usually it focuses on racial demographics of particular neighborhoods. An article on current redlining trends and cases can be found at: http://www.citylab.com/housing/2015/09/redlining-is-alive-and-welland-evolving/407497/.

A report on the relationship between housing choice and the various racial and ethnic disparities that exist today can be found at: http://nationalfairhousing.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/2015-04-30-NFHA-Trends-Report-2015.pdf. Learn more on fair housing for homebuyers at https://www.tdhca.state.tx.us/fair-housing/homebuyers.htm.

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