Earline Penson, left, president of the Portland-Vancouver chapter of NAREB, and NAREB national President Clifford Turner.
The First American Corp., America's largest provider of business information, and the National Association of Real Estate Brokers (NAREB), the oldest and largest minority real estate trade association in the United States, announced recently that First American has been named as a NAREB strategic business information and title services partner.
The alliance will extend innovative business resources to NAREB's national network of Realtist members and help increase homeownership opportunities in traditionally underserved African American communities.
Under the partnership, detailed last month at NAREB's 59th annual convention in Louisville, Ky., First American and NAREB will implement the following five-point plan designed to empower Realtists in their efforts to help more African Americans become homeowners.
• Lead Generation: Using extensive First American data resources, NAREB Realtist members will have the opportunity to reach more potential homebuyers and sellers through customized, multicultural lead generation and marketing solutions.
• Homeownership Counseling: First American will contribute its proprietary alternative credit scoring products and additional resources to assist NAREB's Rebuild America Homeownership Counseling Division in preparing and approving more potential homebuyers with non-traditional credit or banking histories.
• Down Payment Assistance: NAREB and the First American Homeownership Foundation will partner with municipal housing agencies in 10 urban areas to provide first-time homebuyer down payment assistance grants to low-income families.
• Loan Origination Technology: A Web-based, point-of-sale technology platform will be made available to Realtists — initially in select markets — enabling them to deliver best possible mortgage financing options to their homebuyer clients with unprecedented speed and ease.
• Real Estate Financial Literacy: NAREB and First American will select and provide funding to the top 10 NAREB local boards that will assist in the 2007 rollout of a co-branded real estate financial literacy program designed to help families maximize wealth through the effective use of real estate.
Over time, this partnership is expected to help narrow the persistent gap that exists between minority and non-minority homeownership levels.
Nationally, less than half of African American families own homes, significantly trail the roughly 75 percent homeownership rate among non-minorities.
"No other organization matches NAREB's level of awareness and dedication to removing the challenges facing today's prospective African American homebuyer," said Landon V. Taylor, vice president of market development for First American and president of the First American Homeownership Foundation. "We are honored to have the opportunity to partner with NAREB in its mission to empower Realtists across the country, who work tirelessly each day to make the dream of homeownership possible for African Americans in their communities."