The Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) data have just been updated in the NICAR Database Library -- and we'll help you turn it into a story.
WHAT'S IN IT?
This Act requires all banks, savings and loans, savings banks and credit unions with assets of more than $33 million and offices in metropolitan areas to report mortgage applications. Each loan record contains demographic information about loan applicants, including race, gender and income; the purpose of the loan (i.e. home purchase or improvement); whether the buyer intends to live in the home; the type of loan (i.e. conventional, FHA insured, etc.); a new field starting in 2004 called "spread," showing the difference between Treasury security interest rate and the loans interest rate; and the outcome of the loan application (i.e. approved or declined).
HMDA data still come in the old .DBF format, easily imported into Access and other database managers. If you'd like something different, contact us and we'll do our best to help you out. Email email@example.com or call (573) 884-7711.
State slices are available.
WHAT CAN I DO WITH IT?
First, check out a sample of the data here: HMDA.xls
Second, peruse IRE's tipsheets on working with HMDA data:
A run down on what you need to have to do HMDA data based stories and what pitfalls to watch out for in said data.
Data for Tracking the Subprime Story
The author discusses how to find data reported under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act and query it to find information about high-interest loans. Maines also discusses how to tie the database results into a story about foreclosures in your area.
And more here: https://www.ire.org/resource-center/tipsheets/?q=hmda
Also, see what stories others have done before:
This story utilized HMDA data, foreclosure reports and experts to explain how a wave of unstable mortgage loans were causing increasing numbers of uninformed borrowers to lose their homes. The investigation illustrated the problems faced by many people who, being unfamiliar with buying a home, ended up accepting very harsh terms on their loans and mortgages. Experts predict that this situation will lead to a rise in forclosures in the area.
The Hard Truth In Lending
This three-day series looked at many facets of home lending. The reporters used mortgage loan data from 25 top lenders to show that blacks who bought homes in communities across America in 2004 were four times as likely as whites to get high interest rates for mortgage loans. The interest rate disparities occurred even when blacks had substantially higher incomes.
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