Printing mortgage documents in foreign languages isn't enough to reach the growing legions of minority and immigrant homebuyers, according to a Freddie Mac executive."Just translating documents into Spanish won't cut it," said Craig Nickerson, vice president of expanding markets at the huge financial intermediary, noting that most borrowers also want to converse with lenders in their native tongues. But language differences aren't the only "unique" barriers faced by minorities, Mr. Nickerson said Tuesday at the Mortgage Bankers Association's National Secondary Market Conference in Chicago. All would-be homeowners face the challenges of high housing costs, a lack of cash for a decent downpayment, and poor, thin, or even nonexistent credit records, but minorities face additional roadblocks, including the lack of a trusted intermediary and a gross misunderstanding of the lending process, according to the Freddie Mac officer. Minorities distrust financial institutions and, to a lesser extent, the real estate community at large, he said. And they have so many misconceptions about lending procedures that "they are taking themselves out of the game" before they even get up to the plate. Freddie Mac can be found online at http://www.freddiemac.com.

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