HUD No. 08-006-A
January 25, 2008
HUD RELEASES "HOME ECONOMICS" BROCHURE TO IMPROVE FINANCIAL LITERACY AND PREPARE FAMILIES FOR HOMEOWNERSHIP
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development today announced the distribution of more than four million bilingual "Home Economics" brochure that details five key steps Americans need to take to improve their financially literacy and prepare themselves to own a home they can afford.
"It is important that all Americans are financially literate when it comes to buying a home. They need to know what they are committing to before they sign on the dotted line," said HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson. "Owning a home is part of the American dream and we need to make it clearer what the process is to securing that dream."
The "Home Economics" brochure is written in both English and Spanish and sent to local HUD offices, HUD's Homeownership Centers, and housing counseling centers across the country to help families be informed and prepared when they begin the process to owning a home. It can also be accessed at HUD's website. The brochure includes the following financial tips:
Organize - Set a goal to save a certain amount of money each month—then stick to it.
Watch Spending and Savings - Prioritize your family's spending needs so that saving becomes second-nature.
Negotiate - Communicate early and often with companies or banks you owe money to so you can work out problems before they grow larger.
Elevate Your Credit Score - Know your credit score and what it means to banks and credit card companies and your future.
Read (and Understand) the Fine Print - Consider all the options, educate yourself, and be informed before you sign on the dotted line.
The release of the "Home Economics" brochure is part of the Bush Administration's aggressive efforts to make the mortgage process clearer and help families stay in their homes. To improve financial literacy and ensure families understand the fine print of their mortgages, the President has requested $65 million in his new budget for housing counseling. Since 2001, the Administration has increased housing counseling funding by 150 percent and has seen positive results from its 2,300 HUD-approved housing counseling agencies. HUD estimates 96 percent of those who saw a HUD-approved housing counselor in 2007 avoided foreclosure.
HUD is the nation's housing agency committed to increasing homeownership, particularly among minorities; creating affordable housing opportunities for low-income Americans; and supporting the homeless, elderly, people with disabilities and people living with AIDS. The Department also promotes economic and community development, and enforces the nation's fair housing laws. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet and espanol.hud.gov. For more information about FHA products, please visit www.fha.gov.