The Multicultural Real Estate Leadership Advisory Group, which met today in Washington, D.C., offers the opportunity for our multicultural associations and organizations that partner with the National Association of REALTORS® to come together and discuss issues at hand.
The four multicultural groups recognized by NAR are (alphabetical order):
- Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA)
- National Association of Gay and Lesbian Real Estate Professionals (NAGLREP)
- National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP)
- National Association of Real Estate Brokers (NAREB)
To recap the past few months from each association:
- An amendment to the Civil Rights and Fair Housing Act is being voted on this Friday.
- The amendment—called the Equality Act—would prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex, gender identity, and sexual orientation.
- NAR already includes these protections in its Code of Ethics
- Continued language access for everyone.
- Pushing for alternative credit models.
- Diversity and inclusion for women and minorities in positions of management as stipulated in Dodd Frank. (Note: Dodd Frank Act allows for investigative authority but not enforcement authority.)
- Down payment savings plan; help buyers save up, not just first-time homebuyers.
- Preservation of the 30-year mortgage.
- Pushing for removal of risk-based pricing (zip codes, classes, etc.).
- Making sure non-banking lenders don’t discriminate and there is some sort of accountability structure.
Regarding the vote this week on the expansion of Fair Housing: No amendments will be allowed; it will be just a vote. There are 240 co-sponsors, so we expect it to pass the House. Of course, we will watch to see how many Republicans support the measure. There will not be any whipping of votes, so we hope to see high Republican support. Bill sponsors in the Senate are working hard talking to Republican senators to co-sponsors. The Human Rights Campaign estimates it may take three years to enact. However, the White House is currently not in support of the Equality Act, mainly due to the religious freedom vs. LGBTQ equality debate.
I’m excited to see JoAnn Poole, our vice chair for the Multicultural Real Estate Leadership Advisory Group who represented ALL REALTORS® during the “Review of the State of Barriers to Minority Homeownership” before the House Committee on Financial Services and Subcommittee on Housing, Community Development, and Insurance. Go, JoAnn! And thank you to everyone in this advisory group!