HUD Archives: News Releases


HUD No. 07-11
Dwight Peterson
(801) 524-6071
For Release
Thursday
October 5, 2007

BUSH ADMINISTRATION ANNOUNCES $145,000 IN HOUSING COUNSELING GRANTS TO FOUR UTAH AGENCIES

SALT LAKE CITY - Approximately 700,000 families nationwide 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 today by Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson.

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 more than $41 million nationally, 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.

In Utah, four agencies were awarded grants totaling $145,000. The grant recipients are:

City Agency
Grant Amount
Logan
Utah State University � Family Life Center Housing and Financial Counseling Services
$30,846.23
Ogden Your Community Connection
$27,603.00
Provo Community Action Services
$67,000.31
Salt Lake City Salt Lake Community Action Program
$20,000.00

"This Administration strongly believes in the value of housing counseling services," said Jackson. "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.

The four grant recipients are:

Community Action Services Of Provo
Provo, UT
$67,000.31 - Comprehensive Counseling

Community Action Services in Provo, Utah provides a wide variety of home ownership services. They have been a HUD certified housing counseling agency for more than 20 years. They help families prepare to purchase their first home by providing a free home buyer class and by counseling with families to get financially prepared to buy. The agency also gives guidance on refinancing and reverse mortgages. In the past few years Utah has seen a dramatic increase in mortgage defaults and mortgage fraud. The housing program at Community Action works with families to help save their homes. The program also offers counseling in predatory lending practices and works with the elderly to obtain a reverse mortgage.

Community Action Services serves Utah, Wasatch and Summit Counties.

Salt Lake Community Action Program
Salt Lake City, UT
$20,000.00 - Comprehensive Counseling

Salk Lake City Community Action Program reaches out to low-income people in their communities, address their multiple needs through a comprehensive approach, develop partnerships with other community organizations, involve low-income clients in the agency's operations, and administer a wide range of coordinated programs designed to have measurable impact on poverty.

Salt Lake City Community Action Program's many programs include: Emergency Rental/Mortgage Assistance, Transitions To Home Ownership and Permanent Housing, Housing Outreach Rental Program (HORP), Tenant Home Maintenance Training Project, Landlord/Tenant Mediation, Case Management Counseling Salt Lake County HOME TBRA Program, Short-Term Housing For People with HIV/AIDS (HOPWA), Housing/Financial Counseling, Riverwood Cove Transitional Housing, Weatherization, Home Energy Assistance Target (HEAT), Six Neighborhood Centers (Emergency Food Pantries), Employment Program, Head Start, Advocacy & Faces of the Pacific.

Utah State University Family Life Center Housing and Financial Counseling
Logan, UT
$30,846.23 - Comprehensive Counseling

The Family Life Center is a non-profit housing counseling agency serving residents in Utah and Southern Idaho. The Family Life Center was established by the Utah State University College of Family Consumer and Human Development in 1993 to provide counseling services for the community and training for students in the Consumer Science Family Finance Emphasis.

The Family Life Center's mission is to develop, through counseling and education, a community of people and families who are knowledgeable about housing, and who effectively manage their financial resources.

The Family Life Center offers educational workshops and one-on-one counseling to the general public, with a special emphasis on low-to-moderate income families and individuals. The FLC offers, Pre and Post Purchase Educational Workshops and individualized one-on-one counseling, Mortgage Default Counseling and Loss Mitigation negotiation, Reverse Mortgage (HECM) Counseling, and Rental Counseling. In addition, the Family Life Center provides financial counseling on budgeting, credit management, debt reduction, risk management, and saving for a home.

Your Community Connection of Ogden
Ogden, UT
$27,603.00 - Comprehensive Counseling

Your Community Connection of Ogden/Northern Utah is a volunteer-based non-profit organization with more than 61 years of service in Weber, Morgan, Davis and Box Elder Counties. Your Community Connections' three programs centers and community outreach programs give at-risk families and individuals an opportunity to influence conditions that risk their future. The Barbara Kimball Browning Family Enrichment Center, the Gaye D. Littleton Domestic Violence Victim Assistance Center, the Beverly Monson Homeless & Housing Assistance Center and the Ruth Pierpont Eccles Community Resource Center provide safety, direct client services and support services for all victims of domestic violence, rape or sexual assault, and homelessness. Your Community Connection's mission is to provide comprehensive services to support and enhance the quality of life for all women, children and families. YCC's vision is "saving and changing lives".

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 as well as enforces the nation's fair housing laws. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet and espanol.hud.gov.

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Content Archived: March 15, 2011