Richard Salinas, REALTOR for Century 21 M&M and Associates in the Turlock Main Street office, specializes in Hispanic real estate sales. He states, “Back in 2004 – 2006, I was working with a number of Hispanic clients that had to drop out of the market due to the dramatic rise is housing prices–they were priced out of the market.”
According to Salinas, are a large percentage of Hispanics facing foreclosure today due to the fact that they just didn’t understand what they were getting into. Further he says, “Some of those Hispanic home buyers were naïve, trusting that the person selling them a house would not sell them a something they could not afford.”
Roberto Martinez, REALTOR for Century 21 M&M and Associates in the Escalon office, has joined the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce in an effort to educate Spanish speaking home owners. Beyond that, Martinez makes a phone call to home owners In Default and spends some time discussing with them other options besides foreclosure.
“Many home owners facing foreclosure don’t understand that they have options. In most cases, they could sell their home by the process of Short Sale, and could conceivably be creditworthy to buy another home in two years. If they let the banks foreclose on that same home, they will not be creditworthy for seven years,” says Richard Salinas.
In working with Hispanics, it is important to understand a few things about their culture. First and foremost Hispanics are very family oriented. It is no not uncommon for more than one generation to live in the home. And because of this, there are often multiple decision makers in these families.
What this means to the real estate agent is that each person, from the grandparents down to the children that show up for a meeting needs to be treated with respect. If an Uncle or Aunt shows up, they are usually not there by accident. So it is important for the agent to give each member of the family a chance to participate in the conversations and decision making process.
According to Carmen Rodriguez, REALTOR for Century 21 M&M and Associates in the Oakdale office, Hispanics really prefer to work with real estate agents that speak Spanish and understand their culture.
Rodriguez’ advice to anyone that can no longer afford to make their payments is to first contact their mortgage company and try to arrange a Loan Modification. If that doesn’t happen, then sit tight, and try to sell your home through the process of short sale.
According to Rodriguez, most mortgage companies would rather that the distressed owner stay in the home and maintain it, rather than move out and risk damage to the property due to neglect and/or vandalism.