The Federal Housing Administration on Wednesday launched a public education campaign that aims to acquaint low- and moderate-income black and Hispanic home buyers with the FHA brand and the dangers of predatory lending.

The radio- and newspaper-based campaign will target first-time buyers in 16 U.S. markets. In addition, articles and editorials will be placed to help address barriers that minorities have faced on the road to home ownership.

“We have to be able to price the product differently and structure the product differently in order to adapt the 70-year-old FHA program to today’s mortgage market,” said Brian Montgomery, HUD’s assistant secretary for housing and federal housing commissioner. “The next step is to educate the public about how FHA is making it easier to become a homeowner.”

The radio outreach will be heard on 78 stations in the 16 participating communities with some overlap in cities in California. The print campaign will reach a total of 91 newspapers.

The 16 communities participating in the initiative are: Atlanta; Chicago; Columbus, Ohio; Dallas/Ft. Worth; Detroit; Houston; Las Vegas; Los Angeles/Long Beach, Calif.; Miami; Philadelphia; Phoenix/Mesa, Ariz.; San Bernardino/Riverside, Calif.; St. Louis, Mo.; Tampa, Fla., and Washington, D.C./Baltimore, Md.

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