Courtesy of National Association of Real Estate Brokers
Courtesy of National Association of Real Estate Brokers

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Black real estate professionals are geared up for Realtist Week, which focuses the nation’s attention on building black wealth through homeownership.

Realtist Week (April 23-29), established in the early 1970s by the National Association of Real Estate Brokers (NAREB), spotlights the important role black homeownership plays in strengthening and stabilizing communities, with a particular focus on the revitalization and desirability of the nation’s urban neighborhoods.

“NAREB has taken on the charge to encourage black Americans to purchase homes as the first step toward building wealth,” said Ron Cooper, NAREB president. “We have always aspired to be homeowners and live the American dream. Now is the time for us to turn that aspiration into reality — for ourselves, our families and for our future generations.”

Throughout the country, NAREB’s local chapters are scheduling community events and activities that engage social, civic and business organizations, as well as the black church community as part of NAREB’s focused effort to build black wealth through homeownership.

Black homeownership has steadily declined since 2004, when it reached its peak of nearly 50 percent. Today, the national black homeownership rate hovers just below 42 percent, compared to the non-Hispanic white homeownership rate of just above 72 percent.

“Our Realtist Week events in over 30 cities and more than 21 states demonstrates NAREB is at the forefront of building black wealth through homeownership in the country,” said Antoine M. Thompson, the association’s national executive director.

Realtist Week also serves as a showcase for NAREB’s new “2 Million New Black Homeowners in 5 Years” program, initiated to reverse the wealth drain among black Americans.

As a part of Realtist Week, the public is invited to participate in Community Wealth Building Day on Saturday, April 29, where prospective homebuyers can talk with financial education specialists, mortgage lenders, housing counselors, insurance experts and representatives from local government to learn about first-time homebuying as well as available down payment assistance programs.

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WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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