New Vista Asset Management, the San Diego-based minority-owned firm, has announced that it has sold 8,146 foreclosed properties totaling $1 billion in sales through its national real estate broker network. Sixty-six percent of the listings were marketed and sold by multicultural brokers that are a central focus of the company’s strategy. “Our sales results reflect New Vista’s commitment to providing access to REO listings to minority brokers and service to the minority community,” said Gary Acosta, the company’s chairman. The company reported that it sold 5,393 foreclosures or 66 percent of its listings through minority-owned real estate brokers that service the African-American, Asian and Hispanic communities. The sales, which occurred over the past 18 months, account for approximately $17 million in commissions to these firms. While many of the brokers in New Vista’s network have had years of experience in the real estate business, it took New Vista’s involvement and training program to help them break into the REO business. “New Vista gave my company a really big break. This is a very difficult business to break into and for too long, minority brokers have been shut out of this segment of the market,” said David Offutt, an African-American broker in the Boston area. “With the large volume of foreclosure losses in our minority communities, we recognize that property disposition is an important factor to rebuilding our local community. Because of our relationship with New Vista, our company is now one of the largest REO brokers in our market and we are committed to being an important part of the recovery.” Supplier diversity requirements in the Housing and Economic Recovery Act (HERA) and a recent regulatory reform bill now require government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs), servicers and lenders to proactively work with minority and women-owned firms on the marketing and sales of REOs. This move and the emergence of other programs that now target owner-occupant buyers validates New Vista’s original business model. “Achieving diversity in contracting will become more important in the housing and financial services arena, given the new emphasis on the issue in the Dodd-Frank bill and recent enhancements to HERA,” said Armando Falcon, chief executive officer of Falcon Capital Advisors and the former director of the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (OFHEO). “First movers with diverse service networks, like New Vista, are well positioned to help the financial sector achieve sought after diversity and outreach to minority communities.” Acosta is the co-founder of the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP) and Park is the president of the Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA). The two are actively involved in advocacy efforts to preserve minority homeownership rates and the homebuying opportunities. For more information, visit www.newvistareo.com.
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