Mortgage Discrimination Exists!
If someone has ever told you that they feel they didn't get a mortgage or were not able to buy a home because of their race or gender, don't be so quick to dismiss it out of hand. In all actuality, this is called housing or mortgage discrimination, and it does exist.
This is something that has been made illegal under the Fair Housing Act. It's not acceptable to deny anyone a loan based on reason of gender, age, sexual preference, race, color, country of origin, marital status, or if receiving public assistance. Anything that even smells of discrimination of this sort should be reported immediately to the HUD, or the Housing and Urban Development Department.
There are several cases that have been brought to the attention of the national government. Some of these, which were responsible for qualified applicants not being able to acquire mortgages, disregarded their ability to repay the loans simply because they had been overzealous in applying the minimum credit scores required by the FHA. Despite the minimum being 580, which would allow African-American and Latinos to qualify for mortgage loans, some lenders were only allowing borrowers who had higher credit scores to acquire them.
This doesn't only exist with lending institutions, though. Even individual sellers and realty agents may be guilty of this. One case in fact involved a seller who had his home on the market for two years. Despite a verbal agreement to sell the home to an African-American couple, the sale never materialized. The papers that were supposed to be drawn up never were. The seller's reason? The house was off the market.
These are only two of the many cases that are under investigation, and there are many more. So, if you think you are being marginalized, get as much evidence as you can together and report your experience to the authorities.