January 12, 2024
NEWARK – The New Jersey Institute for Social Justice today commended Attorney General Matthew Platkin for his announcement of the Home Appraisal Discrimination Initiative, developed by the New Jersey Division on Civil Rights (DCR) and the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA), to combat racial discrimination in home appraisals.
The Institute has been encouraging DCR to act – as well as advocating for legislation to make home appraisals fair in the Garden State.
The following can be attributed to Laura Sullivan, Director of the Economic Justice Program at the New Jersey Institute for Justice:
“We commend the Attorney General, the New Jersey Division on Civil Rights and the Department of Consumer Affairs for launching a meaningful initiative to combat home appraisal discrimination in New Jersey.
“It is unacceptable that a home owned by Black residents can be appraised at a substantially lower value than when white people stand in for an appraisal on that same home.
“Home ownership is a key driver of wealth, and with a staggering $300,000 racial wealth gap – one of the highest in the country – New Jersey should be vigilant in ensuring that the appraisal process is fair.
“We look forward to working with DCR and DCA on implementation of this initiative, and to helping to ensure that they have the necessary tools and resources for its optimal success.”
According to the Attorney General’s announcement, the Home Appraisal Discrimination Initiative provides enforcement guidance on discrimination in home appraisals; creates a State Real Estate Appraisal Board Appraisal Equity Subcommittee to diversify the appraisal industry; creates a DCR Enforcement Task Force focused on enforcing the Law Against Discrimination in appraisals; initiates complaint sharing between DCR and the State Real Estate Appraiser Board; implements anti-bias trainings for Real Estate Appraiser Board members and appraisers in the state; and launches public education and outreach to educate the public about discrimination in appraisals.