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By Ann Clanton, “Speak-Up” contributing writer
Like most real estate agents, Fabiola Brunache and her multicultural team of six licensed agents, assist prospective home buyers with comparative market analysis and understanding Rhode Island’s volatile market. Fabiola says her most important role as a Broker is helping communities of color with financial literacy.
“As the Biden/Harris administration puts forth policies that they say helps rebuild the middle class, part of my role as a real estate broker in a city that is 18 % people of color is to serve as a catalyst to home ownership and financial security,” says Brunache.
Passionate about young people of color in her generation being financially secure enough to one day purchase their own home, Fabiola points to the disproportionate number of families unable to afford to own a home. According to the Center for American Progress, communities of color are disproportionately impacted by the failures in communities nationwide providing affordable housing. The Center also points to homeownership rates for Black and Latino individuals falling far below the rate for white individuals. Fabiola’s passion extends to increasing the number of finding qualified buyers and begins with offering financial planning and home buyer preparation classes.
Historically, for many African Americans, home ownership is how many families save and build wealth, so these racial disparities in home ownership contribute to the racial wealth gap. And, while it is difficult now, prior to the Johnson administration it was nearly impossible due to the redlining policy. In 1968, Congress passed the Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Act.
The act banned redlining, which had made it difficult or impossible for people of color to borrow money to buy housing in their neighborhoods. Combined with de facto and de jure exclusion of African Americans from new, white-only suburbs, redlining created a segregated and exploitative housing market for Black people, a major factor in the inner-city uprisings of the 1960s.
This resistance caused the Johnson and Nixon administrations to aim the new housing programs at the inner city. At the same time, subsidies for rent for people on welfare were cut, and buying a subsidized house often became easier than getting a rent subsidy.
The result was “predatory inclusion.” Instead of people of color being completely excluded from the means of acquiring wealth – homeownership being a principal way of doing that in the United States – they were included in a way that prevented them from realizing the full financial benefits of inclusion, if they benefited at all.
If you are interested in how to financially prepare for purchasing, contact Fabiola Brunache and the Fab Living Real Estate team. Go to the Fab Living Real Estate website to make an appointment or call them at 401-648-2999.
Federal programs allowed financial institutions (in this case, mortgage banks) to make extraordinary profits off poor people, a phenomenon that has reappeared in both the education and housing markets since that time.
Today, the barrier for most people is their financial background and a limited inventory is impacting all buyers, everywhere. Fabiola’s advice to those considering purchasing a home, check your credit, and don’t be scared – no one is stopping you but yourself.
Fab Living Realty wants you to know they are here. With knowledge, and patience, they will help you to prepare to purchase a home.
Ann-Allison Clanton was born and raised in Providence, Rhode Island. As principle of Ann Clanton Communications, Ann has more than two decades of experience as a communications and public affairs consultant. She has written features and profiles articles for the Providence American Newspaper and Ethnic Online Magazine.
Among the notable persons interviewed include former U. S. Ambassador Andrew Young, Dr. Cornell West, former Florida Congressman Allen West (R-FL) and Ringling Brothers and Barnum Bailey Circus first African American Ringmaster, Johnathan Lee Iverson.
Ann is the founder of the Rhode Island Black Film Festival and a founding member of the Southern New England Association of Black Journalists.