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  • KC Stark

The Fair Housing Act: 101

The Fair Housing Act is a federal law in the United States that prohibits discrimination in the sale, rental, and financing of housing based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex, disability, and familial status. It was passed in 1968 as an amendment to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and is enforced by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).


The Fair Housing Act: 101 History and Homeownership

The Fair Housing Act has Significantly Impacted the Housing Market


The Fair Housing Act has significantly impacted the housing market in the United States, particularly in terms of increasing access to homeownership for historically marginalized groups. Before the passage of the Fair Housing Act, many minority communities were systematically excluded from homeownership opportunities due to discriminatory practices such as redlining, which involved denying or charging higher rates for mortgage loans in certain neighborhoods based on the race or ethnicity of the residents.


Homeownership Rates Increased for Many Minorities

Since the passage of the Fair Housing Act, homeownership rates have increased for many minority groups.


  • Homeownership rate for African Americans increased from 41.1% in 1970 to 49.6% in 2019.

  • Hispanic households were 46.9%

  • Hispanic households were 46.9%

  • Asian households were 53.9%.

  • Homeownership rate for white households were 72.2%


Despite the progress made in increasing access to homeownership for minority groups, discrimination in housing remains a significant issue. HUD receives thousands of complaints of housing discrimination each year, and studies have found that minority homebuyers and renters continue to face discrimination in the housing market.


Fair Housing Initiatives for Homeowners

HUD has implemented several initiatives to address these ongoing issues to promote fair housing and increase access to homeownership for minority groups. These initiatives include educational programs for homeowners and renters, grants, and loans to support affordable housing development, and enforcement actions against housing discrimination.


Towards a More Perfect Union of Homeownership

Overall, the Fair Housing Act has had a significant impact on increasing access to homeownership for minority groups in the United States, but there is still work to be done to address ongoing issues of discrimination in the housing market.


Have question about homeownership? Let's talk. It can be the most important financial decision of your life.


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