Feb 26, 2024 - News

Black homeowners in Indy still face major obstacles

Difference in the typical value of homes owned by Black and white people, by metro area
Data: Zillow; Map: Erin Davis/Axios Visuals

The gap between Black and white homeowners in Indiana has grown over the past decade, Axios' Brianna Crane reports from Zillow data shared with Axios.

Why it matters: Homeownership remains the biggest driver of the wealth gap, per the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

  • Decades ago, discriminatory practices such as redlining exacerbated homeownership inequities that are still evident today.

By the numbers: The homeownership rate for white Hoosiers is nearly double that for Black Hoosiers.

  • Nearly 39% of Black people own homes, an increase of just 0.7% since 2012 — compared with the nearly 76% of white people who own homes, an increase of 1.8%.
  • In Indianapolis, nearly 75% of White residents own homes, compared to 41% of Black residents.

Zoom out: The gap between white and Black homeownership in 2021 in the U.S. was actually larger than in the '60s, before the Fair Housing Act, a Community Capital Management report notes.

What's more: The disparity is seen in property appraisals as well. The typical value of Indy-area homes with Black owners is 9.4% less than homes with white owners.

  • Statewide, the value gap is nearly double that.

The big picture: Nationally, the typical value of U.S. homes with Black owners ($291,000) is 18% less than the typical value of homes with white owners ($354,000).

What they're saying: Black owners seeing their homes appraising for less than those of their white counterparts isn't new.

  • The appraiser workforce is majority white, and it's often difficult to report appraisal discrimination, though new policies are aimed at addressing both of those hurdles.
  • "It's no longer a myth or legend that this happens," HUD chief of staff Julienne Joseph tells Axios.

The latest: State Rep. Cherrish Pryor (D-Indianapolis) filed legislation this session to ban biases in home appraisals, inspired by the experience of an Indianapolis woman who saw her appraised home value double after having a white friend pose as the homeowner.

  • The bill died without a hearing.
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