HUD Region VI: 13-59
Patricia Campbell/Scott Hudman
(817) 978-5974/(713) 718-3107
June 18, 2013
TEXAS RECEIVES $2.6 MILLION IN HOUSING COUNSELING GRANTS FROM HUD
Austin, Bellaire, Benbrook, Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, Waco Agencies Receive Grants
FORT WORTH - As part of its continuing effort to assist families and individuals with their housing needs and to prevent future foreclosures, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) today announced $2,653,793 in grants to housing counseling agencies in Texas. Nationally, more than $40 million was awarded to 334 national, regional and local organizations.
As a result of these grants and the additional funding they help leverage, more than 1.6 million households nationwide will have a greater opportunity to find housing, make more informed housing choices or keep their current homes.
"The evidence is clear that housing counseling works," said HUD Acting Regional Administrator Mark Brezina. "The HUD-approved counseling agencies this funding supports are crucial in helping families manage their money, navigate the homebuying process, avoid foreclosure and secure their financial futures."
Agencies use their grants to address the full range of families' housing counseling needs. This includes helping homebuyers navigate the homebuying process; helping households find affordable rental housing; offering foreclosure prevention counseling; offering financial literacy training to individuals and families struggling to repair credit problems that restrict their housing options; assisting homeless persons in finding transitional housing; and counseling senior citizens seeking reverse mortgages or Home Equity Conversion Mortgages (HECM).
Housing counseling agencies also support fair housing by assisting borrowers in reviewing their loan documentation to avoid potential mortgage scams.
The grantees in Texas and amounts awarded (Grantee summaries follow):
|SUGAR LAND||MONEY MANAGEMENT INTERNATIONAL INC.||$2,127,375|
|BELLAIRE||EASTER SEALS OF GREATER HOUSTON, INC.||$18,167|
|BENBROOK||DEBT EDUCATION AND CERTIFICATION FOUNDATION||$16,690|
|SAN ANTONIO||CITY OF SAN ANTONIO /PLANNING & COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT DEPT.||$21,119|
|SAN ANTONIO||OUR CASAS RESIDENT COUNCIL, INC.||$17,798|
|WACO COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION||$18,536
Of the $40 million awarded today, more than $38 million in grant funds will directly support the housing counseling services provided by 27 national and regional organizations, eight multi-state organizations, 22 State Housing Finance Agencies (SHFAs) and 277 local housing counseling agencies. In addition, HUD is awarding $2 million to two national organizations to train housing counselors who will receive the instruction and certification necessary to effectively assist families with their housing needs.
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 monitoring and oversight to maintain their HUD-approved status.
National and regional agencies distribute much of HUD's housing counseling grant funding to community-based organizations that assist low- and moderate-income families to improve their housing conditions. In addition, these larger organizations help improve the quality of housing counseling services and enhance coordination among counseling providers.
HUD studies show the effectiveness of housing counseling. Last year, HUD released two reports on the impact of HUD-approved housing counseling for families who purchase their first homes and those struggling to prevent foreclosure. In both studies, HUD found housing counseling significantly improved the likelihood homeowners remained in their homes.
HUD's new mobile app (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/hud-counselor-lookup/id568893389?mt=8) allows smartphone and tablet users to locate housing counselors in their own area.
Cornerstone Financial Education-MSO
Cornerstone Financial Education (http://www.csfedu.org) is a national organization that has provided financial education, counseling and debt management to consumers with debt burdens since 2003. Our housing counseling program is especially helpful for our low to moderate income clients, ensuring that their housing needs are met. We believe that financial knowledge is the key to financial stability for low to moderate individuals especially during uncertain economic times.
Debt Education and Certification Foundation (DECAF)
Debt Education and Certification Foundation (DECAF) is a nonprofit organization founded in 2005. The mission of DECAF is to strengthen communities by providing financial education and affordable housing options to individuals and families in need. DECAF provides pre-purchase counseling and education, preparing individuals and families in becoming homeowners. Its mortgage delinquency and default prevention counseling helps reduce the risk of foreclosure for homeowners through budget counseling and assistance in applying for modifications. DECAF is approved by the Department of Justice Executive Office of the US Trustees to provide pre and post-bankruptcy counseling. For more information, visit online at www.housingcourse.com and www.bkcert.com.
CCCS of Greater Dallas, Inc. (CCCS)
CCCS of Greater Dallas, Inc. (CCCS) (http://www.cccs.net) is a HUD-approved non-profit 501(c) (3) housing and credit counseling and education organization headquartered in Dallas, Texas. Since CCCS opened its doors in 1974, more than 1.65 million clients have been served through its 15 branch offices in Texas, Colorado, New Mexico and Oklahoma. Free budget and credit counseling and education offered via phone, online, or face-to-face is central to the long standing mission of financial empowerment.
CCCS has been a HUD-approved Local Housing Counseling Agency since 1979. CCCS is a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling and is accredited by the Council on Accreditation. CCCS became part of HUD's Reverse Mortgage Counseling Network in 2001, delivering critical financial and housing counseling services to seniors. In 2005, CCCS initiated pre-bankruptcy filing counseling and pre-bankruptcy discharge education services. In 2008, CCCS joined the HUD intermediary Homeownership Preservation Foundation (HPF) providing foreclosure prevention counseling services to clients nationwide via the Homeowners HOPE Hotline. In 2009, CCCS became a HUD Multi-State Organization, reflecting the capacity of the organization to provide bilingual housing counseling and education services at branch locations in four states and via telephone in all 50 states and Puerto Rico.
Easter Seals of Greater Houston, Inc. (ES Houston) (http://www.eastersealshouston.org) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing innovative services, including affordable housing, to people with disabilities and their families in Houston and surrounding communities and is in its fifth year as a HUD-approved Local Housing Counseling Agency. ES Houston provides first-time homebuyer education and counseling, credit and debt reduction counseling, financial literacy, post-purchase counseling and support, emergency financial assistance, and down payment and closing cost assistance. These services are offered to first-time homebuyers with disabilities in the City of Houston and Harris, Montgomery, and Ft. Bend Counties. We serve any low income family, but specialize in serving individuals with disabilities who frequently face additional physical, attitudinal and social barriers to achieving homeownership.
City Of San Antonio, Department of Human Services
San Antonio, Texas
The City of San Antonio, (http://www.sanantonio.gov) Department of Human Services is a HUD-approved Housing Counseling Agency, and has provided comprehensive housing counseling services to residents of San Antonio and Bexar County since 1979. These services include housing discrimination/Fair Housing Act outreach and investigation, foreclosure prevention counseling, predatory lending counseling, general pre- and post-purchase housing counseling, emergency financial assistance for mortgage payments, mediation of tenant/landlord disputes, reverse mortgage counseling, and homeless/displacement counseling. Trained staff members conduct one-on-one counseling sessions as well as ongoing community outreach to help families and individuals sustain their housing and to inform them of their rights and options. Services are provided free of charge to all Bexar County residents. With over 30 years of service, The Housing Counseling Program is still committed to assisting area residents improve housing conditions and meet their responsibilities of tenancy and homeownership.
Our Casas Resident Council
San Antonio, Texas
In 1988, public housing tenants from 13 resident councils established Our Casas Resident Council (OCRC) (http://www.sa-ourcasas.com) as a public housing resident council. In 1990 OCRC became a nonprofit. Its purpose is to develop and implement initiatives to empower low to moderate income families and move them into self-sufficiency. OCRC fulfills its mission by providing affordable housing and counseling services including pre purchase, homebuyer education, foreclosure intervention/prevention, rental counseling, closing costs, and down payment assistance. OCRC also builds affordable single and multifamily homes and rehabilitates homes subsequently sold to low income residents.
Money Management International, Inc.
Sugar Land, Texas
Money Management International, Inc. (http://www.moneymanagement.org) (MMI) is a nonprofit, community service organization that provides comprehensive housing counseling, professional financial guidance, counseling, community-wide educational programs, and debt management assistance. MMI and its family of agencies have over 45 years' experience helping consumers regain financial control of their lives. MMI has assisted more than 1,000,000 clients in housing need. MMI provides comprehensive housing counseling services through its network of over 90 branch offices serving 23 states and the District of Columbia. Services include: mortgage delinquency/default counseling, reverse mortgage (HECM) counseling, post purchase (non -delinquency) counseling, rental counseling, pre-purchase counseling and homebuyer education.
Waco Community Development Corporation
Waco Community Development Corporation (http://www.wacocdc.org) is a HUD Certified Housing Counseling Agency established in 2001. Comprehensive housing counseling services include pre-purchase counseling, loan document review, financial literacy training, homebuyer education training, mortgage preparation assistance, counseling to resolve or prevent mortgage delinquency or default, post purchase counseling and post-purchase education. Waco CDC serves Waco and the surrounding area.
HUD's mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes: utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet and espanol.hud.gov. You can also follow HUD on twitter @HUDnews, on facebook at www.facebook.com/HUD, or sign up for news alerts on HUD's News Listserv.