signed fair-lending agreements with 15 Michigan mortgage lenders. So far, 70 lenders have agreed to follow a set of "best practices" outlined last year by the Mortgage Bankers Association of America and HUD. The practices are intended to help home mortgage lenders boost lending to minority borrowers. The agreements typically set lending targets, but HUD does not penalize lenders who fail to meet them. Best practices include better marketing to minority populations and hiring minority loan staff. A HUD representative traveled to Michigan to sign the agreements. In a statement he said they would create "a climate of fair lending which will open the doors of homeownership to hundreds of thousands of families who never thought they could become homeowners." - From staff and wire reports

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