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José Loya On How Race, Gender, And Age affect Access To Mortgage Credit And The Implications For Inequality

  • José Loya
  • June 20 2024
  • PC141-2024

José Loya

Homeownership is one of the most common ways to accumulate wealth and promote intergenerational economic mobility in the United States. But even with laws and policies designed to ensure equal access to housing and financing, access to mortgage credit is far from equal. Factors like the race, gender, and age of the applicant can result in less favorable loan terms and higher rates of denial and default. Dr. José Loya discusses his research on how different demographic factors affect access to mortgage financing, and what policy and practice approaches might help to lessen inequity in this area.

José Loya is an Assistant Professor in Urban Planning at UCLA’s Luskin School of Public Affairs and a faculty affiliate with the Chicano Studies Research Center. He is also a 2023-2025 IRP Emerging Poverty Scholar.

Reference Papers:

Ethno-Racial and Credit Worthiness Disparities in Access to Mortgage Credit

Ethno-racial and Down Payment Disparities in Mortgage Credit Access

Gender and ethno-racial disparities in access to mortgage credit

How Age Shapes Ethno-Racial Disparities in Accessing Mortgage Credit

View Transcript

Siers-Poisson [00:00:05] Hello, and thanks for joining us for the Poverty Research and Policy podcast from the Institute for Research on Poverty at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I’m Judith Siers-Poisson. For this episode, we’re going to be talking with Dr. José Loya about his research on how race, age, gender, and other demographic elements affect access to mortgage credit and why it’s important. You can find a link to the papers we’ll be discussing in the program note for this episode. José Loya is an assistant professor in urban planning at UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs and a faculty affiliate with the Chicano Studies Research Center. He’s also a 2023-2025 IRP Emerging Poverty Scholar. José, thanks for joining us today.

Loya [00:00:48] Thank you for inviting me.

Siers-Poisson [00:00:50] Let’s start by laying out some of the basic facts about homeownership in the United States. Who buys versus rents?

Loya [00:00:58] Yeah, that’s an excellent question. So homeownership is a selected process, right? Not everyone in the U.S. will go into the homeownership market. In fact, previous research has documented that there are specific attributes and characteristics that kind of prepare an individual or a household for homeownership. And so, for example, a lot of research has already pointed out that people that are older, married, have children, have a stable career and higher income. They’re more likely to purchase a home than those that that do not. And so it’s not necessarily something available to everyone. Not everyone is ready to enter the homeownership market.

Siers-Poisson [00:01:42] And do we see differences geographically or by type of community for how many people might be homeowners versus renters?

Loya [00:01:50] For sure. I mean, the geographic differences really stem from the density and the type of places that people live in. So, for example, homeownership may not be as high in places that have a different type of culture when it comes to homeownership. So for example, places that have higher density, like New York, homeownership rates might be slightly lower because those places are built straight up where there’s a ton of apartments and so forth, where where land is extremely scarce. And so like places like San Francisco. And so people have to essentially live in higher buildings, right, or high or higher density buildings in places like that, you may have lower homeownership rates, whereas in places that are much more scattered have lower dense places like, for example, Atlanta, Los Angeles, other cities or suburbs, even rural areas where land isn’t as scarce. Those places tend to have higher levels of homeownership because there’s the availability to build homes. And when we think about homes, we’re really talking about ownership of it. So we can think about single family homes versus condos or townhouses and other forms of of housing.

Siers-Poisson [00:02:57] You did mention a few factors that make it more likely that people will want to buy a home. Things like being older or having a more stable income, having a family. Let’s talk about some of the other factors that come into play, and what the differences are between who rents and owns their home. I’m thinking especially about race and ethnicity and gender.

Loya [00:03:20] So I think homeownership kind of represents, in many ways, wealth in the U.S. So homeownership is the largest vehicle for creating wealth. It’s not small businesses. It’s not owning stocks or bonds. It’s actually the purchasing of a house. So for minorities and the like, home ownership really is that opportunity to gain and increase their wealth levels. And this includes for Black and Latino and Asian or actually any ethno-racial group, including men and women, that these are a huge opportunity to build and grow assets. In addition, the beauty of home ownership, unlike other types of assets, is that our society, mostly through our government policy, really, really has major incentives. And so it also allows people to purchase a home, right, or a wealth-generating vehicle, however you want to describe it, for a smaller price. So while we pay the sticker price of a home, right, we’re able to borrow a ton from government to be able to purchase that asset and grow it over time. And so minorities in particular, when it comes to homeownership, homeownership is an extremely valuable asset because generally minorities and women generally have lower levels of wealth to begin with. And so being able to purchase a home is a major advantage to being able to generate wealth currently and across generations.

Siers-Poisson [00:04:45] As you mentioned, homeownership doesn’t necessarily happen for people at younger ages or in certain areas. So before we go further, I want to ask if you can explain the process of getting financing to buy a home and what factors are used to determine what kind of mortgage financing someone might be offered.

Loya [00:05:03] Yeah. So it’s kind of interesting when we think about purchasing a home, there’s usually two things that are going on at once. First, I’d like to think of it as like the fun part where you’re actually going out and thinking about whether or not you’re ready for a home, and then going out to see what homes are available once you’re ready for homeownership. And in a lot of ways, that’s extremely stressful, right? Trying to decide which home is right for you. What’s your budget? In addition, also thinking about who else is trying to buy the home that you think is for you and your family. And so that’s one process. The second process, though, while you’re doing that, is to figure out what kind of home or for the amount of money you qualify for. And that’s the mortgage process. And during the mortgage process, it’s supposed to be more formulaic. Right. So when we think about getting a mortgage, really it’s just kind of getting a mortgage is a loan. And so we’re trying, for individuals trying to enter homeownership through the mortgage process, so they’re not buying the home in cash, they’re going to essentially go through these two processes. And on the mortgage side, that’s where the financial and economic risk or decisionmaking becomes much more prevalent. So that’s where, for example, when you’re trying to purchase a home, there’s several major factors that are considered as to the amount of loan you may receive and whether or not you will get a loan to begin with. And that includes your current income, your current disposable income, right, your type of employment and length of employment, or the consistency of your employment, your down payment. So how much you’re willing to to put down on a house in terms of the purchase. And then you also have the credit side. So you’re talking about two different two very important aspects. One is your FICO credit score. And then the second is your debt-to-income ratio, which is a function of your debt divided by your total income.

Siers-Poisson [00:07:06] And you mentioned possible outcomes of receiving a loan, a mortgage loan, or not. But also there are different types of mortgages that can have really different effects on the people who are taking out those loans. Can you explain the different types of loans that might be offered?

Loya [00:07:23] For sure. So in my research, I really like to focus on three categories. When you get a mortgage, there are a ton of different programs across the country. There’s also local and state programs, that are available to individuals. But in my research, I kind of put them into three distinct buckets. The first is the loan origination. And for the most part, that’s what every homeseeker is looking for. You want to be granted a low-cost, fixed interest rate loan for 15 to 30 years, right? So it kind of extends the length of the loan and it reduces your monthly payment depending on the situation. And that’s what we’re, I would say actually almost everyone is looking for, that’s what we want when we look into the mortgage market. Now if you’re not granted a mortgage or a loan origination, you might be offered a high-cost loan. Now, a high-cost loan is a loan origination. But in those cases, the financial institution is willing to lend you money, but it’s at a higher interest rate. So we call that a high-cost loan. The federal government, more -specifically the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, defines a high-cost loan as any loan that has an interest rate of 1.5 percentage points higher than the prime rate, or the current going rate of a good loan. And finally, if you’re not offered a high-cost loan, then you might just be denied. And so in my research and actually most researchers that study mortgages or housing, those are the big three different buckets that we put, just because there’s so many different types of loans available. But generally you want either a loan origination — you don’t want a high-cost loan, but you might settle for it — and then ultimately, you definitely don’t want to be denied when you’re trying to buy a house.

Siers-Poisson [00:09:03] So as you explained, these decisions about mortgages are made, at least in theory, on facts and figures about the person who’s applying. But your research shows that people don’t always get the credit access that they should by the numbers, that there are demographic differences that are pretty stark in some cases. Can you explain a little bit about what that looks like?

Loya [00:09:31] Yeah. So that’s actually the crux or like the big component of my research. And so my research focuses on the barriers that minorities and different groups face when trying to access homeownership. The emphasis is on on minority or racial discrimination in housing. And from there, the research that I do really tries to figure out individual and neighborhood level characteristics that we know is standard in the homeownership process and try to see what’s going on, and more specifically, try to identify whether or not there are differences between ethno-racial groups when applying for these types of credit. And so for the majority of my career here as a housing scholar at UCLA, that’s been the focal point of my research. And in most of, actually in all of my work, I kind of display and show how minorities are often neglected and/or have major disadvantages in the mortgage market, as well as throughout the homeownership process when trying to access homeownership against or compared to very similar White counterparts. And so this is both at the individual level as well as the neighborhood level. And this has major ramifications when we think about, one, I mean, the house itself or just accessing homeownership, but also has major implications for wealth, generational wealth, as well as stabilization of lower-income and minority neighborhoods. Right. When we think about housing turnover, as well as who has the opportunity to live in specific types of neighborhoods. And so most of my work shows that Latinos and Blacks generally, regardless of sociodemographic or socioeconomic status, generally find it more difficult to obtain mortgage credit, which ultimately reduces homeownership opportunities than similar Whites across the U.S, regardless of region, regardless of neighborhood characteristics as well.

Siers-Poisson [00:11:28] Well, and speaking of those neighborhood characteristics, most communities in the United States are still segregated. To some extent. There are major-minority communities, there are majority-White communities, neighborhoods. And one of the things that I found really interesting in your research is that because the housing values are much lower in those minority neighborhoods, that even if a person of color is able to buy a house, they’re not reaping the same benefits of the wealth that they’re accumulating, because an identical house in a minority neighborhood is probably going to be worth less than the same house would be in a White community.

Loya [00:12:15] Yeah. So that’s the second focus right. So my first focus was just on access to mortgage credit. Right. Whether or not you even have access to being able to purchase a home. The second one is thinking about the types of homes people are buying. And so the second part of my research does focus, and that’s the part where I’m getting into now in the next, the next part of my career, is thinking about what the types of homes that are available for specific ethno-racial groups, as well as those available in specific neighborhoods. Right. So when we’re thinking about low-income neighborhoods versus high-income neighborhoods, minority neighborhoods versus White neighborhoods, thinking about the challenges that not only minorities face when just trying to access a home, but what are the types of homes that are available to them when they do, in fact, get mortgage credit? And so a big part of my current project is trying to identify and figure out some of those mechanisms in which we think about what we value or how we value homes. So, for example, right now I’m in the midst of thinking about what are the important factors in creating or understanding value. And so some of us might think, “Oh, it’s just the home, the quality of the home, the number of bedrooms and baths.” But ultimately it’s also about the neighborhood characteristics, like how good are the schools for the person’s potential children, what are the types of community amenities and government services that are offered, as well as how close or not close public transit or high opportunity jobs are? Right? It, maybe it’s not about public transit. Maybe it’s if I could walk to my job down the street, it doesn’t matter that I have a car or public transit. And so those are the types of factors that I’m starting to think about when thinking about what it means to to buy a home, and how we value homes and the types of homes across, you know, neighborhoods.

Siers-Poisson [00:14:06] Not to oversimplify your research, but one of the things that really stood out to me is that looking at mortgage applicants who are Black versus mortgage applicants who are White, with those factors that are taken into consideration for who is a good risk to give a mortgage loan to, Whites who scored poorly on those factors still are able to access the same kinds of mortgages that Blacks who score the highest on those scales are. And you do a great job of putting that into real life in the subprime mortgage crisis. Can you talk a little bit about how that affected homeowners of color so much more severely than White homeowners?

Loya [00:14:52] For sure. So my current research documents that, right? So it documents how high-creditworthy Black and Latino borrowers perform similarly to White, low-creditworthiness borrowers. That has major implications when we think about this idea that it’s supposed to be an economic risk evaluation. Now, in addition to that, we also know, like you mentioned, that how we think about risk changes over time. And so in the last 25 years, right, in the early 2000s, we had a housing bubble, we now like to refer to it as the housing bubble. But at the time, everyone just thought housing prices were just going to keep going higher and higher and never stop. And then we have the Great Recession. And during that time, most of the housing bubble was being fueled by the subprime mortgage market. And the subprime mortgage market was viewed in a couple of ways. And the first, we can think of it as the subprime mortgage market was these alternative, higher-cost loans that allowed, in theory, people that were at the margins to enter the homeownership market. Maybe their jobs were paid in cash, maybe they didn’t necessarily have the highest credit, but this gave them access to homeownership. During that time, however, it also made an assumption that housing prices were going to continue to grow. The moment they stopped growing, these loans became really toxic because they would essentially change, the interest rates changed, based off of the current rates at the time. And so when we had the Great Recession, this essential bubble burst and inequality changed. You know, in addition, financial institutions changed. We saw a huge, you know, when we think about just the U.S. economy overall, we had tons, millions of people lose their jobs. We had tons of assets and wealth-building vehicles essentially decline significantly. Most prominently was housing. And so people that had absorbed or had accepted these high-cost loans were extremely vulnerable. And that led to massive foreclosures and people essentially losing their home. And more specifically, my research and that of others have documented that minorities in particular and lower-income homeowners were the ones that were most at risk for these types of loans. In addition, minorities and low-income households, not only were they disproportionately absorbing these loans, but in fact they actually, when compared to to similar higher-income or White borrowers, when they had good characteristics, they were still more likely to be offered high-cost loans than Whites and higher-income borrowers. This had major implications, right? So it wasn’t just people at the margins. It was essentially a product that was steered specifically to these marginalized groups. And this had disastrous effects, as we now know, in terms of the foreclosure rates in nonwhite versus White neighborhoods, high-income neighborhoods versus low-income neighborhoods. And for many years after 2010, these neighborhoods were still recovering. Fast forward, we’re 14 years later, a lot of these neighborhoods have recovered, at least in terms of home values. Right. But the stigma and and some of the lack of investment continues to plague these neighborhoods. So we can think of this in terms of families being displaced, property taxes for ten years not being where they were. Right. Also a lack of government services in these areas. And so while housing has steadily increased, it impacted these areas particularly harder than others.

Siers-Poisson [00:18:38] José, you also layered gender and age over racial and ethnic differences. Let’s start with gender. I see a few different combinations here. There are solo homebuyers who are either male or female, and then joint applications where either a man or a woman is the primary applicant. And you did note that you were not able to look at same-gender couples in the study. So that’s why we’re breaking it down as we are. Does the percentage of applicants that fit into those different categories vary by race?

Loya [00:19:07] They do. But also that paper was, I think was really cool for two reasons. The first is that we know that generally, single women have higher homeownership rates than single men. So in general, in housing, when we talk about social inequality and understanding marginalized groups, we never really focus on women because in housing they’re outperforming single men. So in general, in the literature, we kind of have ignored this area. So that’s the first one. The second one, though, is we know very little about how co-applicants or in this case, couples, do in the mortgage market and whether or not there’s differences. And so like I said there’s there’s very little or scarce research on gender and housing inequality or homeownership inequality. But there’s also this additional dimension that across ethno-racial groups, there’s differences in who, men or women, are the ones going into the homeownership market. So, for example, actually amongst Blacks, women are more likely, are really the ones generating or the ones that are entering the homeownership market at higher levels than men. When you look at, men and women, it’s about 60/40 men. In some cases, 50/50. So it’s generally a better split. And that includes, Latinos and Asians. But Blacks in particular, women are the ones driving the homeownership gains. In addition to that, when you look at the dynamics, right. Well, one would think, well, single women are outperforming single men. And so hence we see very little research because everything looks great. However, this paper in particular shows that while that might be the case when we think about couples, it does matter who’s the primary mortgage applicant. In other words, we begin to see gender inequality when women are the primary applicant for a mortgage versus when a male or men are the primary borrowers amongst couples. And that kind of adds on a different layer. So women, single women are doing spectacular. However, when we look at couples, women that are that essentially are the head of households or the economic head of households, and for those couples or in the mortgage application, they’re underperforming compared to similar male-headed couples. And so we begin to actually see that gender inequality happen amongst couples and not necessarily among singles.

Siers-Poisson [00:21:38] So what does that look like? Is it the type of loan that they’re getting or is it whether they’re getting a loan or not. What does that good performance mean?

Loya [00:21:46] So in general, good performance is a loan origination but also amongst couples right, they’re more likely to get the adverse. So women, married couples are more likely to get a high-cost loan or just be denied altogether when they share similar socioeconomic circumstances as their male-headed counterpart. And that has big implications when we think about who the breadwinners are in a couple. And this is especially important in the mortgage market, because when we do a mortgage application, generally the bank will ask for the person who has the best economic circumstances to be the lead on a mortgage application. And so this does tell us a little bit about some of these gender dynamics, or the gender inequality that we faced among couples in the homeownership space.

Siers-Poisson [00:22:34] So you also look at age, and I want to put that layer on top of what we’ve talked about race and gender. First, how is homeownership spread across the life cycle in general?

Loya [00:22:47] So generally in terms of homeownership, it kind of increases over time. And we’re talking about people that are over 18. Right. So before 18 you’re probably you’re probably not going to own a home. But after 18 we generally see a pattern of homeownership is really low, for people that are less than 28 years old. We see a dramatic increase after 28 up until about 55, up until 55, 65. And then we kind of see it generally. tailor off. And then over time, we begin to see a decline. Now that kind of fits the life cycle when we think about like generally people that are under 28, you know, those that are ready for homeownership are probably still in school, don’t have a family or are generally single. And so those individuals are maybe more likely being able to move around. They don’t necessarily value homeownership in the same way as someone that maybe is after 28. That’s when we begin to see family formation across different ethno-racial groups. And so they’re more likely to want to buy a home, potentially put roots down in their neighborhoods or communities. And so we start seeing that homeownership begins to increase. We still see that over time because families then after that, like, you know, they build a, they, some families fall apart and then come back together depending on their age. And then as people begin to retire from their careers, they begin to either downsize and they say, “Hey, maybe I want to access the equity of my home.” And so they sell and begin to rent, or they move to places that are warmer from cold places and so forth. And so you begin to see homeownership begins to tailor off. Just because people are also moving their assets around to across generations. And so I wouldn’t say less important, but it’s a different part of their, their current life trajectory or career trajectory. In terms of that research, the reason I found it interesting was, well, we know that across ethno-racial groups that they don’t all share the same age distribution. So, for example, we know that Asians and Latinos generally in our U.S. population are really young, are much younger than Whites and Blacks in the U.S.. So when we think about homeownership, it may be that when we talk about the differentials across these groups, it just might be that Asians and Latinos aren’t ready for homeownership. We have a bunch of 18 to 22 year olds, like a bunch of 18 to 25 year olds. It’s not that they don’t care about homeownership. Actually, it might be that they don’t care about homeownership because of their age, and not necessarily because it’s something about their ethnic or racial group. Whereas you see Whites and Blacks that they tend to have an older age distribution in the U.S. And so the way I thought about it was that these specific groups might be on different life, in terms of the different life course, the age distributions might vary enough that that’s the reason that we see these differentials across groups, because we’re not considering where these groups are at in in their current situation. And so that paper really tried to identify well, what if everyone was 25, or what if everyone was, you know, across if we can control for age, what would that access to homeownership look like. So how does a 25-year-old White individual compared to a 25-year-old Black, Latino and Asian individual look like, compared to similar seniors look like, or people that are in the middle of their career and so forth. And unfortunately, we found that those racial differences kind of actually are maintained throughout. Right. So even though age does matter in homeownership access and we can think of this, right, people that are under 25, they tend to have lower credit, a little more financially risky. And so they have generally have less access to mortgage credit. As they get older, their socioeconomic status improves. They tend to have the best access. Right? And then actually, those that are much older, like ending their careers and retired, they tend to be a little bit more economically risky. They might be on fixed incomes. Their income is no longer growing and so forth. So as a result, they may have slightly less access to homeownership. So we can kind of think of this as like a bubble in terms of homeownership access. But that bell, while it exists across all different ethnic racial groups, Blacks and Latinos, still showed that across these age groups they had constrained and limited access to mortgage credit, regardless of their age and regardless of the socioeconomic status that they that they had compared to similar Whites.

Siers-Poisson [00:27:14] Well, and another factor that you looked at is down payment access and amount. And going back to what we talked about at the very beginning of our conversation, there’s a huge racial wealth gap. And I think there are a lot of people, White people in particular, who might be able to get a gift or a loan from a parent or another relative to help, especially with that down payment, which can bring down the monthly mortgage payments, which can maybe eliminate the need for mortgage insurance. And with that racial wealth gap in mind, it kind of makes sense that especially Blacks would maybe be entering that that homeownership period later, a little later in life.

Loya [00:27:59] For sure. And actually that’s great, that that’s awesome that you bring that up because that’s actually what we saw. We saw that minorities in particular were more likely to enter the homeownership process or the mortgage market at a later age, compared to Whites and even Asians. And so we did see a shift. So not only were Latinos just younger, but there were fewer of them in the mortgage market, right, relative to others because they had to wait to accumulate that wealth or accumulate the down payment to enter the mortgage market. And so we definitely see that amongst Blacks that the number, just the sheer number of Blacks that are entering the mortgage market is much smaller compared to any other ethno racial group in the U.S. And including Latinos and Whites. And so that has major implications, as you mentioned, in terms of just gaining access and also reducing your costs at that specific stage to build assets in the future.

Siers-Poisson [00:28:52] So pulling all of this research together, I’d like to kind of get down to the bottom line here. Who is at the biggest disadvantage in getting access to mortgage financing that they should, on paper, qualify for or deserve?

Loya [00:29:08] So my work really highlights how Latinos and Blacks at both the individual and neighborhood level continue to have major disadvantages when accessing mortgage credit. And so regardless of how we cut up the data, regardless of what year we take it from, from early 2000 to 2024, at no time period has there ever been some type of equal access to mortgage, regardless of controlling for these socioeconomic characteristics. And so those major disadvantages continue to dominate the mortgage market, or the lack of access that that these groups face. And so when we think about other types of social issues, whether it’s education that we know stems from local property taxes and so forth, when it comes to thinking about, neighborhood amenities like parks and, and police and fire, housing, and more, more specifically, homeownership plays a central issue to that. And so we see, and at least in my research, that Latinos and Blacks don’t have that type of access. And ultimately these consequences later on, when we think about the racial wealth gap, are essentially limiting homeownership as that tool to reduce the wealth gap, because even when we promote it, we see the systematic challenges and barriers for these groups in particular.

Siers-Poisson [00:30:36] I want to talk about the policy and practice implications of the inequity in mortgage access that you explain in your research. First, are there approaches that have been tried that have not been successful, or at least not as successful as they would need to be to make a real difference?

Loya [00:30:52] Yeah. So I think many states and, including the federal government, right, are grappling with this idea that we can no longer think about providing programs based off of the disadvantages that Blacks and Latinos have faced in the U.S.. So, in other words, a lot of programs back 20 years ago could have a better or more direct impact on providing additional benefits and services to minority neighborhoods that is no longer…in most states, that is a huge fight because these states and at the state level or political levels argue like that means we’re taking resources away from someone else or something like that, and that that’s not the case. But that’s essentially the argument. Because of that, a lot of housing and homeownership programs now are starting to become race neutral. And because of that, they’re really trying to figure out ways to identify lower-resourced areas and provide them with access to programs that can essentially increase homeownership. That’s the challenge right now, to be honest, is trying to figure out ways in terms of race-neutral housing policy. How do we overcome the barriers that Latinos and Blacks are facing when it comes to accessing homeownership, or even just quality housing altogether? And so that’s the challenge that policymakers have essentially created for themselves, because they’ve confused equity with equality. And so across different social domains, this isn’t new, but in in particularly in terms of housing, we no longer explicitly talk about the impact the segregation has had, the impact that a lack of resources have had on these neighborhoods. And instead we’re trying to kind of spread the resources around when we have limited resources, and we know that that’s not actually the problem.

Siers-Poisson [00:32:43] So as those policymakers grapple with this issue, whether it’s at a local or a state or a federal level, what would you, based on your research, want them to be thinking about and considering as they try to find solutions?

Loya [00:32:57] So I think the big thing for me, because I assume that I’m working in a race-neutral policy that these policymakers have to work with is really identifying ways to provide resources to lower-income neighborhoods. We know that lower-income neighborhoods are highly correlated with race and ethnicity. And so by specifically focusing our attention on lower-resourced areas, so to improve homeownership opportunities or programs that allow people to transition across the different forms of ownership and renting to provide better social opportunities for families, ultimately that’s what we care about. Right. It’s not really about homeownership. I always kind of joke around it’s not really about having the right to paint the wall or move my fence or whatever. It’s really about the opportunities that that home provides for that family. And my thing when I talk to local policymakers is to really think about how we can improve housing quality for lower-income families so that they themselves are better off and their children have better opportunities in terms of social mobility. And so that’s my primary focus, even though it’s not homeownership focused, it’s housing focus.

Siers-Poisson [00:34:11] And as we wrap up, what further research would you like to do or see done on this issue?

Loya [00:34:18] So the next part of my work is actually to have a more direct link on the way we think about home ownership and segregation today and the different forms of segregation. So a lot of work has already been done on the Black-White racial segregation aspect of housing. But I like to focus this on on Asian segregation, Latino segregation. What does that look like in specific regions when the dichotomy between White and Black just doesn’t exist? Right. And so what does that look like? In addition, the next part of my research is also to look at the differences between urban, suburban and rural areas when it comes to home ownership and what the implications are when we think about different types of neighborhoods by race. So how do Black rural neighborhoods compare to suburban Black neighborhoods as compared to White, suburban White neighborhoods and so forth? And I think that’s been an area that we’ve understudied and undervalued, because in the housing area, we constantly just focus on the urban suburban differences and have largely ignored the other types of communities that have formed in the U.S. or that exist in the U.S.

Siers-Poisson [00:35:30] Well, José, thank you so much for spending time with us and sharing your work with us.

Loya [00:35:35] Thank you for inviting me.

Siers-Poisson [00:35:37] Thanks so much to Dr. José Loya for talking with us about his research on how race, age, gender, and other demographic factors affect access to mortgage credit. You can find links to the papers we discussed in the program note for this episode. The production of this podcast was supported in part by funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation. But views expressed by our speakers, don’t necessarily represent the opinions or policies of that office or of any other sponsor, including the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Music for the episode is by Poi Dog Pandering. Thanks for listening.


Economic Support, Financial Security, Gender Inequality, Housing, Housing Market, Inequality & Mobility, Neighborhood Effects, Place, Racial/Ethnic Inequality


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