(404) 331-5001 ext. 2008
October 26, 2007
HUD PRESENTS OVER $858 THOUSAND IN HOUSING COUNSELING CHECKS
TO STATE OF GEORGIA AND GEORGIA HOUSING COUNSELING AGENCIES
ATLANTA - At an event held today, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Regional Director Bob
Young presented a ceremonial check for Housing Counseling Grants for $858,666.92 to the Georgia Department of Community Affairs and Georgia Housing Counseling Agencies.
Joining Regional Director Bob Young were representatives from: Georgia Department of Community Affairs; the City
of Albany, Georgia; East Athens Development Corporation; Hancock Community Development Corporation;
Cooperative Resource Center, Inc.; Georgia Housing and Finance Authority; Totally Free, Inc.; University of Georgia Family and Consumer Sciences Cooperative Extension Service; Affordable Housing Enterprises, Inc.; Neighborworks Columbus; Center for Pan Asian Community Services, Inc.; Home Development Resources, Inc.; JCVision and Associates, Inc.; Macon Middle Georgia Housing Counseling Center; Cobb Housing, Inc.; Appalachian Housing and Redevelopment Corporation; Economic Opportunity for Savannah Chatham County Area, Inc.; Redemption Ministries, Inc.; and Middle Georgia Community Action Agency, Inc.
Approximately 700,000 families will have a greater opportunity to find housing or keep the homes they have because of more than $44 million in housing counseling and counseling training grants announced by Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson last week in the National announcement.
Housing counseling grants will assist families in becoming first-time homeowners and remaining homeowners after
their purchase. Renters and homeless individuals and families will also benefit from the counseling offered by the grants. These grants, totaling over $41 million, were awarded to 19 national and regional organizations and nearly
370 state and local housing counseling agencies.
Housing counseling training grants will help approximately 2,600 counselors receive the instruction and certification necessary to effectively assist families with their housing needs. These grants, totaling $3 million, were awarded to two national organizations.
"This Administration strongly believes in the value of housing counseling services," said Bob Young, HUD Atlanta Regional Director. "These organizations help families make informed choices before they take the important step of homeownership. They also provide a service that is vital in today's mortgage market - they counsel families facing foreclosure and advise them about their options."
National and regional agencies distribute much of HUD's housing counseling grant funding to community-based grassroots organizations that provide advice and guidance to low- and moderate-income families seeking to improve their housing conditions. In addition, these larger organizations help improve the quality of housing counseling
services and enhance coordination among other counseling providers.
Of the more than $41 million in housing counseling grants, $3 million is being awarded in supplemental funding for
Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) counseling. These funds will provide counseling for the rapidly growing number of elderly homeowners who seek to convert equity in their homes into income that can be used to pay for home improvements, medical costs, and other living expenses.
The organizations that provide housing counseling services help people become or remain homeowners or find rental housing, and assist homeless persons in finding the transitional housing they need to move toward a permanent
place to live. Grant recipients also help homebuyers and homeowners realistically evaluate their readiness for a
home purchase, understand their financing and downpayment options, and navigate what can be an extremely confusing and difficult process.
In addition, grantees help combat predatory lending by helping unwary borrowers avoid unreasonably high interest rates, inflated appraisals, unaffordable repayment terms, and other conditions that can result in a loss of equity, increased debt, default, and even foreclosure. Likewise, foreclosure prevention counseling helps homeowners facing delinquency or default employ strategies, including expense reduction, negotiation with lenders and loan servicers,
and loss mitigation, to avoid foreclosure. With foreclosures on the rise nationwide, these services are more
important than ever.
HUD awards annual grants under the housing counseling program through a competitive process. Organizations that apply for grants must be HUD-approved and are subject to biennial performance reviews to maintain their HUD-approved status.
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.
Local HUD contact: Linda Allen, Public Affairs, (404) 331-5001 ext. 2012.
GEORGIA HOUSING COUNSELING GRANTS FOR FY 2007
Affordable Housing Enterprises, Inc.
Affordable Housing Enterprises, Inc. (AHE) was founded in1993 and approved as a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization
in January 1997. AHE was formed by a group of concerned community-based citizens to provide affordable housing
to special needs populations, which include low-and-moderate income persons, persons with disabilities, elderly, minorities, and families with limited English proficiency. AHE has the knowledge skill set and experience to administer housing programs. AHE conducts pre-purchase, homebuyer education, post-purchase, rental, and homeless/displacement counseling. During the 2006 fiscal year, AHE assisted over 700 clients in need of resolving
their housing issues. This fiscal year, AHE projects 568 clients will be counseled with HUD housing counseling grant funds.
Appalachian Housing Redevelopment Corporation (AHRC) of Rome, Georgia, is a subsidiary non-profit organization of the Northwest Georgia Housing Authority and has provided housing counseling since 1999. AHRC has implemented comprehensive services and programs that benefit the low-income population of Floyd County. Counseling services include Homebuyer Education, Mortgage Default Prevention, Pre and Post Purchase Counseling, Fair Housing,
Rentals and the Homeless. AHRC plans to counsel 225 clients with issues pertaining to housing.
Center for Pan Asian Community Services, Inc.
Established in 1980, the mission of the Center for Pan Asian Community Services, Inc. (CPACS) is to create and deliver culturally competent and comprehensive social and health services to counteract problems faced by immigrants, refugees, and racial-ethnic minorities in Atlanta. CPACS will use HUD Housing Counseling Program funds
to provide a total of 212 Asian Pacific Islanders (APIs) in DeKalb and Gwinnett Counties with one-to-one and group housing counseling. Housing counseling services include: mortgage delinquency and default resolution, pre-purchase and rental assistance. CPACS is the only agency in Atlanta that provides these services to APIs.
City of Albany, Georgia
The City of Albany, Department of Community & Economic Development (DCED), has been a HUD approved
counseling agency since 1992. Housing counseling services offered by the agency include default, budget, pre-
rental, pre-purchase, and post occupancy counseling. DCED provides housing counseling services for 14 counties
in southwest Georgia. During FY 2006, the agency successfully counseled 907 clients. Twenty-seven clients
avoided foreclosure, 6 clients purchased a home and 214 clients completed homeownership workshops.
Cobb Housing, Inc.
Cobb Housing, Inc. (CHI) incorporated in December 1992 as a community based non-profit 501(c) (3) organization. Designated as a HUD-approved Housing Counseling Agency in 1996, the organizations services include: pre-
purchase, post-purchase and default counseling. CHI also offers FirstHome down payment assistance to first time homebuyers. As a NeighborWorks America Organization, CHI has established program standards and training for program staff. Additionally in 1994, CHI became the first and remains the only "Community Housing Development Organization" (CHDO) in Cobb County. As a CHDO, CHI worked aggressively to make a significant impact towards alleviating the critical shortage of affordable housing in Cobb County. Fiscal year 2006, CHI served 751 clients.
This fiscal year, CHI plans to serve 450 clients with housing counseling grant funds received from HUD.
Columbus Housing Initiative, Inc. dba NeighborWorks Columbus
Columbus Housing Initiative, Inc. was organized in 1998 as an overall effort by Columbus civic leadership to improve substandard housing conditions and revitalize blighted neighborhoods. The agency joined the Campaign for Home Ownership as a homeownership center in 2004, and in 2007 became a HUD approved counseling agency, as a
branch office of NeighborWorks in Columbus. The agency provides counseling in the following areas: pre-purchase
and post-purchase, mortgage delinquency and default, fair housing, rental, loss mitigation, predatory lending, and debt management to Columbus, GA and to Lee and Russell counties in Eastern Alabama. To date, 473 clients have purchased their first home. The agency counseled 454 clients during fiscal year 2006 and projects to counsel 320
with HUD housing counseling grant funds this fiscal year.
Cooperative Resource Center, Inc.
The Cooperative Resource Center, Inc. (CRC) is a nonprofit corporation whose mission is to maximize innovation, productivity, and efficiency in the development of affordable housing communities in Georgia. CRC is a HUD
approved counseling agency that provides affordable housing opportunities to low and moderate income families
and individuals. Their counseling services include pre-purchase, home buyer education, pre-rental, mortgage delinquency and default, reverse equity mortgage, and post occupancy counseling. Counseling is provided in both group and one-on-one sessions. The service area covers five counties in the Metropolitan Atlanta statistical area. CRC counseled 439clients in fiscal year 2006 and has projected to serve 160 with HUD housing counseling grant
funds this fiscal year.
East Athens Development Corporation
East Athens Development Corporation (EADC) is a nonprofit community based development organization, as well as
a community housing development organization serving 11 low- to moderate-income earning counties in the state
of Georgia. EADC became a HUD-approved housing counseling agency in January of 2002. The agency's housing counseling activities include delinquency, budget/money management, home improvement, homebuyer education, home improvement,HECM, and fair housing. Other housing counseling services include rental and predatory lending. During the 2006 fiscal year, the agency was able to reach and assist over 700 clients. Of those counseled, 22
became first-time homebuyers and 28 successfully avoided foreclosure. This fiscal year, EADC projects to serve
290 with HUD housing counseling grant funds.
Economic Opportunity for Savannah-Chatham County Area, Inc.
Economic Opportunity for Savannah-Chatham County Area, Inc. is a Community Action Agency, and has been a
HUD approved housing counseling agency since 1995. The service areas for their housing counseling activities
include Chatham, Bryan and Effingham counties in Georgia, as well as several other counties in North Carolina. The agency provides pre-purchase, homebuyer education, loss mitigation, HECM, pre- and post rental, credit,
budgeting, and money management counseling services. In FY 2006, the agency counseled 813 clients, of which
53 avoided foreclosure, 36 purchased homes, and 351 completed homebuyer education workshops.
Georgia Housing And Finance Authority
Since 1976, Georgia Housing and Finance Authority (GHFA) has been the principal organization providing affordable housing opportunities throughout the State of Georgia. In 1996, GHFA and the Georgia Department of Community Affairs (DCA) merged. The merger was designed to better coordinate the implementation of housing and community development programs to benefit low and moderate-income households across Georgia. GHFA issues mortgage
revenue bonds and holds mortgages, while DCA staff administers GHFA's programs. GHFA is an experienced manager
of programs funded by federal awards and other sources and has administered its housing counseling program since 1998. Currently, a statewide network of 21 nonprofit agencies is supported by DCA to provide individual one-on-one counseling and a total of 37 nonprofit agencies also provide home buyer education in a group setting. Staff provides counselor training, technical assistance and marketing support to this network.
Hancock Community Development Corporation
Hancock Community Development Corporation was incorporated in June of 1999, and approved by HUD as a housing counseling agency in July of 2006. Hancock Community Development Corporation's goal is to assist low-to-moderate income people in becoming homeowners. Hancock Community Development Corporation housing counseling program provides pre- purchase, homebuyer education, mortgage delinquency, rental housing, post purchase non- delinquency, and shelter or service for the homeless. During the last fiscal year, Hancock Community Development Corporation successfully counseled 111 clients.
Home Development Resources, Inc. (Formerly Gainesville-Hall County)
Home Development Resources, Inc. is a HUD-approved comprehensive housing counseling agency that provides housing counseling in the areas of pre-purchase, mortgage default/loss mitigation, post-purchase, home
improvement and rehabilitation counseling, marketing and outreach, and first-time homebuyers counseling. In
addition to its housing counseling activities, Home Development Resources, Inc. provides clients with information about affordable housing opportunities throughout the service area as well as the availability of grants and down payment assistance. Home Development Resources, Inc. also addresses fair housing and predatory lending practices
in its counseling sessions and promotes increased awareness of predatory lending practices throughout the community. During fiscal year 2006, Home Development Resources, Inc. successfully counseled 318 clients and projects to serve 310 this fiscal year with HUD housing counseling grant funds.
JCVision and Associates, Inc.
J. C. Vision and Associates, Inc. is a faith-based nonprofit organization that provides comprehensive housing counseling services to potential homebuyers, homeowners, renters and housing providers within the target area, and12 rural counties in southeast Georgia. J. C. Vision and Associates, Inc. promotes awareness of housing needs, assists households in making informed home purchasing decisions, provides fair housing assistance, and improves public accessibility and transition to affordable housing choices, opportunities and mortgage resources. J. C. Visions provides housing counseling for homebuyer education, pre and post purchase, mortgage default, predatory lending counseling and rental and homeless assistance counseling. During the last fiscal year, J. C. Vision and Associates,
Inc. successfully counseled 636 clients.
Macon Middle Georgia Housing Counseling Center
The Macon-Middle Georgia Housing Counseling Center, Inc.(MMGHCC), a 501c(3) non-profit organization, serves as the platform for homeownership education and counseling services for the residents of Macon and surrounding
areas. The overall goal of MMGHCC, a HUD approved Housing Counseling Agency, is to provide clients with the
know-how and understanding of the complete cycle of homeownership. The agency offers a variety of services to help homeowners obtain and retain their properties; which includes: post-occupancy counseling, default/foreclosure counseling services, and fair housing education and awareness. Last fiscal year, MMGHCC served 609 clients. This fiscal year, MMGHCC plans to serve 237 clients with the housing counseling grant from HUD.
Middle Georgia Community Action Agency, Inc.
Warner Robbins, GA
Middle Georgia Community Action, Inc. (MGCAA), was incorporated in 1974, and has been a HUD certified counseling agency since 1979. MGCAA along with their subsidiary agency, Heart of Georgia Community Action Counsel have offices in 35 counties of the state. The combined offices operate 21 service centers in 19 counties. The agency provides pre/post and purchase, homebuyer education, mortgage delinquent/default, HECM, rental, homeless/displacement, predatory lending, and housing rehabilitation counseling. In cooperation with local lenders
and realtors, seminars and workshops are conducted to address various housing issues. They provide predatory lending counseling to all elderly homeowners receiving assistance through their Rural Preservation Program. In FY 2006, the agency counseled 826 clients, of which 279 avoided foreclosure, 2 purchased homes, and 116 completed homebuyer education workshops.
Redemption Ministries, Inc.
Redemption Ministries, Inc. is a faith-based housing counseling agency that began in 2003 to provide high quality assistance to first-time homebuyers in Thomas, Grady, Mitchell, Worth, and Dougherty Counties. Redemption Ministries, Inc. provides housing counseling for pre-purchase, post-purchase, budget, debt, and delinquency counseling. Their mission is to provide high quality assistance to people in their operating area to purchase their
first home. During the last fiscal year, Redemption Ministries, Inc. successfully counseled 197 clients.
The University of Georgia
The University of Georgia College of Family and Consumer Sciences (FACS) received approval from HUD as a housing counseling agency in 2004. Housing education and counseling are made available to counties throughout Georgia by County Cooperative Extension FACS Agents. The Education and Counseling Housing Outreach program provides homebuyer education, pre-purchase counseling, post-purchase education, financial literacy and the promotion of energy star products and energy conservation. At this time 11 rural counties are provided with housing counseling
and education. With the grant, The University of Georgia plans to counsel 150 clients.
Totally Free, Inc.
Totally Free, Inc. is a HUD approved housing counseling agency that provides homebuyer education, delinquency/default and non delinquency post-purchase counseling, housing choice vouchers and the individual development accounts programs. The agency serves the counties of Glynn, Camden, McIntosh, Wayne, Pierce, Brantley, and Charlton. Additionally, its homebuyer and financial education reaches into 20 counties. In 2005,
Totally Free was chosen as the recipient for the Outstanding Achievement Award in housing counseling at the
Georgia Department of Community Affairs Magnolia Awards. Totally Free's goal is to bring more recognition to affordable housing in real estate and lending, while reaching as many low to moderate income individuals as
possible. This agency served 535 during fiscal year 2006 and projects to serve 550 this fiscal year with HUD
housing counseling grant funds.