‘Wake UP!’ Bank of America’s racially charged home loan program sends heads to desks

Bank of America is facing backlash after GOP presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy drew attention to one of its little-known programs.

In a tweet posted Wednesday, he linked his millions of followers to a 2022 page on Bank of America’s website announcing a racially based program aimed at “black and Hispanic communities.”

Look:

Known as the Community Affordable Loan Solution, the program ostensibly helps black and Hispanic families by requiring no down payment, no closing costs, and no credit scores.

“Bank of America today announced a new mortgage solution for first-time homebuyers that offers a bank-provided down payment and no closing costs,” the page Ramaswamy linked to reads.

“The Community Affordable Loan Solution is available for properties in Black/African American and Hispanic-Latino communities, as defined by the U.S. census, in Charlotte, Dallas, Detroit, Los Angeles and Miami,” it adds.

The announcement continues by noting that neither mortgage insurance nor a minimum credit score is needed to obtain a loan.

“The Community Affordable Loan Solution is a Special Purpose Credit Program which uses credit guidelines based on factors such as timely rent, utility bill, phone and auto insurance payments. … Individual eligibility is based on income and home location,” it reads.

The announcement also claims “[a]nyone from any race or ethnicity is welcome to apply,” though this seems to be contradicted by the stipulation that the program only applies to “properties in Black/African American and Hispanic-Latino communities.”

The announcement goes on to justify its racial preferences.

“According to the National Association of Realtors, today there is a nearly 30-percentage-point gap in homeownership between White and Black Americans; for Hispanic buyers, the gap is nearly 20 percent. And the competitive housing market has made it even more difficult for potential homebuyers, especially people of color, to buy homes,” it dubiously claims.

“Homeownership strengthens our communities and can help individuals and families to build wealth over time,” Bank of America official AJ Barkley said in the announcement.

Our Community Affordable Loan Solution will help make the dream of sustained homeownership attainable for more Black and Hispanic families, and it is part of our broader commitment to the communities that we serve,” he added.

All this is very bad not only because of the racial aspect but because no down payments, no closing costs, and no credit scores are exactly how the last financial crisis erupted.

“The subprime mortgage crisis of 2007–10 stemmed from an earlier expansion of mortgage credit, including to borrowers who previously would have had difficulty getting mortgages, which both contributed to and was facilitated by rapidly rising home prices,” according to Federal Reserve History.

“Traditionally, potential homebuyers found it difficult to obtain mortgages if they had below-average credit histories, provided small down payments or sought high-payment loans,” the site continues.

And justifiably so — because of the risks inherent in loaning out money to unreliable parties.

But when the rules were dropped preceding the Great Recession, there was a rush of unqualified folks obtaining home loans they simply couldn’t afford.

Responding to Ramaswamy’s post, many critics remarked that the same thing is bound to happen again thanks to Bank of America’s desire to appease the black and Hispanic communities.

Look:

Critics were also incensed over the racial nonsense.

“Bank of America is telling people to willfully segregate themselves. Wake. UP! We are regressing, and pioneers like MLK and Rosa Parks would be disgusted,” one critic tweeted.

Vivek Saxena

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