New Institute Report: Black Homeownership Matters

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Dear New Jersey Institute for Social Justice friend,

Homeownership is a primary driver of wealth.

But here’s a simple truth: Black New Jerseyans do not have the same access to homeownership as their white neighbors. And even when Black households are able to own homes in New Jersey, they face substantial barriers to wealth-building and enjoy significantly fewer financial benefits from homeownership compared to their white peers. This impedes their ability to accumulate wealth and financial security during already challenging times.

Our new report, Black Homeownership Matters: Expanding Access to Housing Wealth for Black New Jerseyans, explains how high housing costs; higher home lending costs, including a lack of access to fair credit; credit scoring systems; and the racial wealth gap itself act as structural barriers to Black homeownership.

Black Homeownership Matters presents achievable policy proposals to these problems, including better homeownership programs; combatting home appraisal discrimination (take action here); protections against foreclosure; expanding affordable housing; targeted assistance programs for Black homebuyers; and establishing a Reparations Task Force in New Jersey (take action here).

Just 38.4% of Black New Jersey households own homes compared to 75.9% of white New Jersey households. In addition, Black New Jerseyans are 2.1 times more likely to be denied a loan for the purchase of a home than white New Jerseyans.

Also concerning is the fact that Black New Jerseyans’ total wealth through homeownership is only 5.9% of the state’s total $860 billion in wealth through homeownership in primary residences, even though they make up about 15 percent of the state’s population.

At the Institute, we fight every day to make sure Black lives really matter in New Jersey and beyond.

We hope you’ll read our report to learn why expanding Black homeownership is part of that equation.

Thank you, as always, for standing with us.

You can find other opportunities to take action for social and racial justice here, and you can donate to our work here.

Nichole Nelson

Mellon/ACLS Public Fellow and Policy Analyst