Foreclosures show a racial divide in house decay

Source: Emily Badger & Quoctrung Bui, N.Y.Times (Paid Registration)

The modest white house on Arlene Avenue in Dayton, Ohio, was an eyesore. The paint was peeling, and parts of the shutters were missing. The yard was thickly overgrown, and the back door, such as it was, had been jury-rigged from plywood.

Nonprofit housing advocacy groups allege in a federal district court lawsuit filed in California this month that the lender responsible for maintaining them, the quasi-government agency Fannie Mae, allowed them to deteriorate. The organizations, led by the National Fair Housing Alliance, say that Fannie Mae has systematically failed to care for houses in foreclosure in minority neighborhoods while ensuring that those in working- and middle-class white communities were well tended and ready for sale.

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