Within the last decade, the idea of owning a home seemed attainable for everyone, but those dreams have been deferred by a real recession. Even in suburbs where people had been doing better than middle class, the more pricey homes seemed to suddenly be within reach. But, it was merely a facade.
Prince George’s county, has the highest concentration of affluent African American families in the country. But, the area, right outside D.C., is experiencing a downturn in fortune and the houses are under water and foreclosing at an alarming rate. In fact, the county leads Maryland in foreclosures, according to MSNBC.
A lot of the people living in Prince George’s are employed by the federal government. This is a prime example of the story we reported on last week regarding families losing their government jobs. Not only are the jobs being eliminated, but the housing prices have deflated.
The national average of loss in housing values is 8%, but Maryland’s loss is at 9.9%, according to Zillow.com. These numbers provide a bleak housing future for Maryland homeowners looking to sell the pricey palaces that are now worth nearly 10 percent less than what they paid for them. But in Prince George’s county specifically, homes are down 15.6%.
The housing boom drove prices extremely high in the D.C. suburb. According to the Federal Reserve’s Gov. Janet Yellen in a speech Thursday, “In general home prices in low- and moderate-income neighborhoods rose more quickly in the boom and have fallen more sharply in the bust.”
In addition to the housing issues of PGC, other elements have destroyed the community. The education system is in the toilet, the former County Executive Jack Johnson pleaded guilty last month to federal charges in a huge financial scandal of embezzlement and corruption.
Read the rest of the story here and the evidence of reverse red-lining on Hispanics and African Americans.