Florida has one of the highest foreclosure rates in the nation, which means banks are often responsible for maintaining large swaths of properties. But a study by the National Fair Housing Alliance has found that homes owned by the three largest U.S. banks, Wells Fargo, U.S. Bank and Bank of America, are not maintaining their properties in an equal fashion. The group found that foreclosures in communities of color have a higher rate of trash, of unkempt yards, vandalism and less marketing, CBS Miami reported.
The National Fair Housing Alliance survey looked at 768 houses nationwide. In the Miami-Fort Lauderdale area they examined 66 houses – 23 in predominantly white neighborhoods and 43 in non-white neighborhoods, according to CBS. And in every category NFHA examined, homes in minority neighborhoods were more likely to be neglected and in a state of direpair.
However, the banks deny the charges. A Wells Fargo spokesperson responded to the survey saying: “Wells Fargo conducts all lending- and servicing-related activities in a fair and consistent manner without regard to race, and this includes maintenance and marketing standards for all foreclosed properties for which we are responsible. We have been communicating with the National Fair Housing Alliance since May regarding their claim, and also have been engaged with the Department of Housing and Urban Development on the issue.” [CBS Miami] —Christopher Cameron