Hispanics over 50 are Among the Hardest Hit with Foreclosure Crisis


The pinnacle of the American Dream was becoming a homeowner. However, that dream went bust for many after the subprime bubble crumbled in 2008. At first, minorities and the middle class were the hardest hit by the market implosion; besides these folks, we had no data on how the depression affected the 50+ segment -- well, not until now.

AARP Public Policy Institute recently published a study called Nightmare on Main Street: Older Americans and the Mortgage. This is the first study focused on the 50+ population and how they have been affected by the mortgage crisis. The results are worrisome, to say the least; it shows that more than three million Americans reaching retirement age or already retired are at risk of losing their homes.

The highlights of the report are the following:

  • Seriously delinquent mortgages have increased 456 percent, from 1.1 percent in 2007 to 6 percent in 2011, among people 50+.
  • By the end of 2011, 16 percent of the loans for the same group were underwater, meaning that their debt was greater than the total value of their home.
  • For homeowners holding prime loans, the foreclosure rate has climbed 23 times higher since 2007, growing from 0.1 percent to 2.3 percent in 2011.
  • For people with subprime loans, the foreclosure rate went from 2.3 percent in 2007 to 12.9 percent in 2011.
  • Hispanics are the hardest hit with the highest foreclosures rates both on prime and subprime loans among the 50+ population.

"More policy solutions are needed to assist all homeowners, particularly older Americans. Policy solutions that should be considered include: principal reduction loan modifications; mediation programs; more access to housing counseling and legal assistance programs; and development of short-term financial assistance programs," the study concludes.

AARP calls for bolder actions from lawmakers to address these climbing trends. The study shows that minorities are the ones suffering the worst from the mortgage crisis and there should be a legal and organized way to rescue them from this debacle.

Read a copy of the report by clicking here. (PDF)

Image Credit: Photo by Jon Boyes/Getty Images

Search AARP Blogs

Related Posts
February 04, 2016 09:00 AM
When Dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, I knew he would need all of his senses to help interpret the world around him and balance his changing cognitive abilities. But he has hearing impairment and limited vision (glaucoma plus visual-processing problems associated with Alzheimer’s). Even though there is only so much I can do about the visual issues, I assumed  hearing aids would solve his auditory problems. I was wrong. The good news is that we eventually discovered a surprisingly simple solution.
February 01, 2016 10:00 AM
The phone rang one day when I was at work. It was my mom. “Come right away, Elaine, we need you,” she said. Mom had just driven Pop to the emergency room. I knew Pop must have been very sick, because Mom hadn’t driven a car in years.
January 21, 2016 01:00 PM
I have been both a live-in caregiver and a long-distance caregiver. In fact, currently, I’m really both. My dad lives with me (as do my sister and her two sons at the moment), and I also travel for work, about a week every month. I’ve learned to manage my loved ones’ care no matter where I am. Here are some of my tips for other long-distance caregivers.