Housing discrimination knows no bounds.
We’ve heard a lot of stories about people who could not afford them getting loans—especially from sources who knew they could not afford them and misled them to believe they could. But more and more stories about home loan discrimination—just as disturbing, if not even moreso—are coming to light, making us wonder just who in hell these lenders think they are.
We’ve heard about people being denied homes on basis of skin color, gender, sexual orientation, and more. We’ve been hearing some pretty horrific—and heartbreaking—stories across the country of people who could afford their “American dream” but had it denied simply because the lending company didn’t like them for who they were. Illegal? In most cases. Still being done? You bet.
Recently there was a story about a woman—a doctor, if that makes a difference (you never hear of doctors being denied home loans, after all)—who was approved for her new home loan. She was excited to move into her new house when suddenly the loan was revoked.
It’s funny how they can even do that, no matter the basis, isn’t it?
And in this case, the basis was definitely not valid. The woman was denied her loan because she was taking maternity leave—something that is protected for her to do for her job, that helps her keep said job while she delivers her baby.
Apparently it just doesn’t extend to protecting one’s ability to own a home—which, of course, is very helpful when you have a child.
A New York Times article about this situation went on to quote an expert in the business who admitted that such things often cause people to be denied of a home loan. And according to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, it is perfectly legal to assess whether or not an individual has the income to buy a house—but not to disallow a loan to be granted due to maternity leave or other familial factors. If the money’s there, it’s there—and in this case, the woman was initially approved, so we know it’s a case of discrimination.
HUD is now investigating this case as well as others that have been made. Please send them your comments about how important this investigation is to you and let them know that you applaud their efforts. Let’s ensure that no parent is denied a home because of his or her children or potential children.