State Investigates Mortgage Lending Practices in Buffalo

February 5, 2021 at 9:04 am Leave a comment

Governor Cuomo and the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) issued a strongly worded report criticizing mortgage lending practices in the Buffalo area.  The DFS’ investigation was based on an analysis of HMDA data comprising the Buffalo Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), which includes the Counties of Erie, Niagara and Cattaraugus and the City of Buffalo. 

According to the Governor’s Press Release, “Buffalo remains one of the most racially segregated cities in the United States decades after the practice of redlining and other forms of housing discrimination were banned by law. DFS’ report found a distinct lack of lending by mortgage lenders, particularly non-depository lenders, continues today in Buffalo neighborhoods with majority-minority populations and to minority homebuyers in general.”

Although the report highlighted the Buffalo area, it reflects what is likely to be a strong push on the part of both federal and state regulators to use Fair Market Lending laws to tackle patterns of racial inequality.  For example, the Department begins the report by noting that much of the racial housing patterns in the area have their roots in government policies dating back to the Great Depression. Nevertheless, the Department concludes that mortgage lending practices should better address these disparities.

The report also highlights the fact that much of the lending in Buffalo is done by non-depository banking institutions, which are licensed by New York State.  It suggests that the State Community Reinvestment Act be amended to incorporate non-depository lending institutions such as mortgage banks.

My Good as Tier I Capital Super Bowl Prediction

On a much lighter note, yours truly is ready to make his good as gold Super Bowl prediction after having been half right in predicting that Tampa Bay would be meeting the Ravens this Sunday.  I apologize for underestimating the Buffalo Bills.  The Chiefs are favored by three points.  I say give the points, take the money:  Chiefs 38-Tampa Bay 20.  Enjoy your weekend, folks.

Entry filed under: Legal Watch, Mortgage Lending, New York State, Regulatory. Tags: , , , , .

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Authored By:

Henry Meier, Esq., Senior Vice President, General Counsel, New York Credit Union Association.

The views Henry expresses are Henry’s alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Association. In addition, although Henry strives to give his readers useful and accurate information on a broad range of subjects, many of which involve legal disputes, his views are not a substitute for legal advise from retained counsel.

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