Immigration Law Affects Housing Market
A new law in Georgia may have a surprising effect on the real estate and mortgage markets that cater to Spanish-speaking immigrants in the state.
The new legislation does not outright forbid homeownership to immigrants without legal status, yet many Latinos are unsure about the changing homeownership situation.
The law is slated to come into affect in July of 2007. It will make it tougher for undocumented residents to live in the state.
Companies that hold state contracts will be required to confirm employee immigrant position. Those employers who knowingly hire undocumented workers will be penalized.
Government programs will be excluded from the law, while the penal system will force the immigration status of all felons.
Immigrants without legal status have been one of the most significant new consumer groups. Many lenders allow the use of an Individual Tax Identification Number in the funding of a mortgage in place of a Social Security Number.
The number of homes purchased by Latino buyers has increased by 5,000 in the past five years in Atlanta, GA, according to the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act.
Georgia is home to the second-fastest growing Latino population in the country. Because of the new law, many Latino buyers have cancelled their purchase contracts. Latino sellers have removed their homes from the market. many potential buyers are looking for other options.