From the Editor: Working Together to Reduce Barriers

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I recently returned from a trip to the Middle East, where I witnessed women in unimaginable, impoverished circumstances. In the West Bank, women have an unemployment rate of over 42% (nearly double that of men), largely due to women’s lack of access and use of assets such as credit (pcbs.gov, unwomen.org). (Our featured “Impact Gift” supports these women, see pg. 26). Naturally, this experience reminds me of how grateful I am to live in a society where women represent over half of the growth in our workforce and where one in five home purchases are made by women (Bureau of Labor Statistics, NAR). However, we still have a long way to go in terms of wealth equality in the United States. Women are underrepresented at every level of organizations, and women of color face disproportionately high barriers to sustainable homeownership.

As women and as an industry, we should work together to reduce these barriers and help underserved segments of our communities move towards a thriving future. For businesses, reaching untapped segments of the market will result in higher revenues and a competitive advantage in today’s growing multicultural environment.

In this issue, we address some of these barriers and opportunities from our industry’s leading organizations and experts, including addressing topics such as: access to credit and use of alternative credit scoring models, leveraging diversity in the workplace, and marketing best practices in underserved communities.

We know the examples shared in this issue are only a drop in the bucket of activity in which mortgage companies and individuals are engaged in promoting financial inclusion and social impact, and we’d love to hear what you’re doing. Visit our Facebook page at
facebook.com/mortgagewomen and leave a comment to inform and inspire our community.

My grandmother, who was a community college professor in a very underserved neighborhood, continually quoted Mahatma Ghandi for inspiration, and I think it couldn’t be more relevant for our conversation in this issue. “We need not wait to see what others do.”

Thank you for your continued support and engagement. If you like the commentary you find in this issue, please share it with your colleagues and on social media.

Let’s make progress together,

Kristin Messerli
Managing Editor

Mortgage Women Magazine welcomes your feedback. If you have comments, questions, criticisms, praise, or information to share with us and our readers, please write us at info@Twelve11Media.Com.

 

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