Minority homeowners rising
Yuba-Sutter ranked seventh nationally for growth in purchases of new homes by minorities, according to a mortgage industry study released Thursday.
The Yuba City Metropolitan Statistical Area, which includes Yuba and Sutter counties saw a 53 percent increase in minority home-buying from 2004 to 2005. The figures were released in “The 2005 Minority Home Buying Surge” report, which analyzed 388 metro areas nationwide.
The report used newly released 2005 Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data and analyzed the change in minority home purchase loans between 2004 and 2005 in 388 metro areas. Minority borrowers had a greater percent change than whites in 320 markets.
Yuba-Sutter was the only California metropolitan area to make the Top 10 list.
Toni Fresquez, a Realtor with Century 21 Select in Yuba City, said the news didn't really surprise her. She's been helping Hispanics purchase homes since 1990, she said.
“This is the American dream to own your home,” she said. For many Hispanics, coming to the U.S. was just a short-term plan.
“Their dream was to go back,” she said. “That's not their dream anymore.”
Bimal Mann, co-owner of Trinity West Mortgage and a broker with Allied Realty, said the surrounding agricultural area brings many farmworkers here, and in spite of having seasonal work, many are looking to buy homes.
Mann attributed the rise in minority home purchases to population growth, a recent decline in home prices, the increase in employment, and the availability of many programs to help minorities purchase homes.
“These programs are really competitive,” she said.
Many minority families are large, and different members help pay for the mortgage, she said.
Out of the hundreds of clients Fresquez has helped since 1990, only three have lost their homes, she said. It shows they are willing to work hard to obtain and keep their dream, she said.
There was a time when minority home buyers were not really tapped, but that has changed, Fresquez said.
Minorities, particularly Hispanics, are filling home-buying workshops, she said. They are seeking and receiving education about what's out there, she said.
Bimal suggested that potential home buyers visit a mortgage financial institution. These institutions will help people through the process and give them advice on how to deal with credit issues to make home buying easier, she said.
“It's a great market, not only for the Hispanics,” Fresquez said.
Appeal-Democrat reporter Daniel Witter can be reached at 749-4712. You may e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.