Fannie Mae and FHA ban loans in Englewood, West Englewood

by Joe Zekas on 4/1/12

In a surprise move, Fannie Mae and the Federal Housing Administration, the largest sources of mortgage liquidity in the US housing market, announced Friday that they will no longer purchase or insure mortgage loans originated in Chicago’s Englewood and West Englewood neighborhoods.

“Part of our core mission is to help struggling families and stabilize neighborhoods and home values,” said a Fannie Mae spokesperson. “We can’t accomplish that mission in urban neighborhoods that have been written off by their local governments as plantations to warehouse the poor and concentrate criminal elements. The City of Chicago has clearly abandoned all hope for Englewood, and Fannie Mae’s new policy is simply reflecting that fact. We do not have the resources to make up for the complete lack of local law enforcement in policing mortgage fraud in these areas.” A spokesperson for the FHA declined to comment.

The Fannie Mae and FHA announcement indicated that additional neighborhoods in Chicago and other major cities will become subject to the loan ban in the future.

April fools — The above is, of course, a prank that doesn’t in any way reflect the position of Fannie Mae or the FHA.

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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

eric April 1, 2012 at 1:57 PM

Wait how can the feds red l…damn calendar

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Andy April 2, 2012 at 11:33 AM

What exactly do you want the city to do, Joe? I’m legitimately curious.

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Joe Zekas April 2, 2012 at 11:57 AM

Andy,

It would take writing a book to answer. Anything to begin breaking the aura of hopelessness that pervades the area.

A massive overhaul of the neighborhood schools would be a starting point.

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Buster April 2, 2012 at 12:49 PM

Is there really an aura of hopelessness pervading the area? Or is that the perception? I have family (on my wife’s side) from the poorest sections of Chicago and they’re some of the happiest people I’ve ever met (and a lot friendlier than many I’ve met from more well-to-do parts of town). The real estate market there may be “hopeless,” but I don’t think the majority of the people there are. The news reports and reality are two drastically different things. They have crime, yes. But the everyday reality for working poor families isn’t all bleak.

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Joe Zekas April 2, 2012 at 4:15 PM

Have you spent much time in Englewood, Buster?

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Buster April 2, 2012 at 5:35 PM

Most of my time has been spent in Lawndale, Austin, South Shore, Garfield Park and near 60th and Ashland, which I think is in West Englewood.

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Joe Zekas April 2, 2012 at 11:21 PM

Buster,

Englewood’s a large community where a variety of people live varied lives.

Saying that an aura of hopelessness pervades the community isn’t saying that everyone is affected in the same way by that aura.

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the urban politician April 3, 2012 at 12:15 PM

Englewood is so depressing that I refuse to go within a mile of that area.

I really feel horrible visiting the depressing side of Chicago, I used to venture down there just out of curiosity. Those days are over.

Vacant lots, vacant blocks, it’s too much to handle. I’m not sure there even is a solution. I’m guessing it will take centuries for these areas to really return to civilization. Think Ancient Rome after the fall of the Roman Empire.

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carmelcutie22 April 3, 2012 at 3:53 PM

There is nothing wrong with that area. Its the people in that area that is the problem. If the people were replaced with immigrants or some other group it would be better. No one will speak of the big elephant in the room of why the area is the way it is and I won’t say it here. I won’t lite that fire here. Its true that areas is written off. The so called black leaders and democrat establishment needs for it to stay that way and will ensure it does.

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Buster April 4, 2012 at 6:15 AM

Carmelcutie22….funny you should mention immigrants. I went to Ellis Island with my black relatives and it was a very sad experience when my elderly mother-in-law looked down and said “my relatives didn’t come over on these boats.” She wished she had a happy story about ancestors immigrating to a better place. I’ve often related the notion that when your grandfather is a police officer or doctor, chances are you’ll be a police officer or doctor. But what if you grandfather is a stupid animal? A good for nothing, spit-upon piece of garbage, unfit to even speak in front of a white man, let alone use his toilet? How long does it take before the grandkids become doctors…moving from that scenario? Unfortunately, I think it will take generations and generations. You can’t erase the inequality put in place overnight. And it wasn’t that long ago. My mother-in-law…my wife’s mom…was a sharecropper as a kid with her family down south. Her parents simply lived on the white man’s land her parents had lived up…unable to escape the cycle. I wouldn’t blame the black people living in poverty personally. Sort of like blaming a rape victim for what happened to her. Sorry…just kind of a sore point with me.

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alwaysabgirl April 18, 2012 at 7:28 PM

I don’t live in Englewood but these folks do— want change, gotta make change. Don’t talk about it, be about it. http://ragenglewood.org/
http://mrsenglewood.blogspot.com/2010/12/rage-resident-association-of-greater.html
http://thesixthward.blogspot.com/2011/03/miss-englewood-on-wciu.html

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SheridanB April 19, 2012 at 3:49 PM

“carmelcutie” is a huge racist on Curbed…

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Joe Zekas April 19, 2012 at 4:11 PM

I had a recent exchange with carmelcutie on Curbed.

Those kind of comments aren’t tolerated here. One more and carmelcutie will be banned from commenting here.

I didn’t dodge rocks and bottles on open housing marches 45 years ago in Milwaukee so that I could watch people throw verbal rocks here.

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