As NCUA Chairman Debbie Matz wrapped up live town hall meetings last week and prepares for a digital town hall meeting next week, Credit Union Times takes a look back at her time as an NCUA board member. Five years ago, before the mortgage meltdown, Matz clashed with NCUA Chairman JoAnn Johnson on the issue of homeownership. Johnson praised data that in 2003 the number of homeowners increased by 1.7 million as the number of renters declined, while Matz said that for low-to-moderate income Americans homeownership is not a dream but a mirage. Matz pointed out in a press release that while homeownership rate was a record 70%, the homeownership rate for low-to-moderate income families had fallen to a lower level than in 1978 at 56%. Johnson stated that one of President Bush’s goals was to increase minority homeownership by 5.5 million by end of the decade. Matz said that home prices have risen over three times faster than income in the last four years. At the time, Matz had been working with and serving as vice chair for the Neighborhood Reinvestment Corp. and included affordable mortgages in her partnering and leadership successes workshops. In the article, Martz said, “Homeownership is a very significant issue and something I’ve felt very strongly about since day one. Credit unions are and will continue to be part of the solution.” Matz pointed out that 70% of credit unions were making mortgages, but they’re not digging down deep as only 2% of all mortgages were made by credit unions.

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Peter Westerman


Credit Union Times

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