The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced late yesterday the recipients of just over $42 million in Housing Counseling program grants for fiscal year (FY) 2019. HUD’s announcement says the funding will go to 207 different housing counseling agencies, including 19 state HFAs who will receive a combined $8.5 million in grants. HUD also released a comprehensive summary of each grant award.
These grants will support programs that provide low- and moderate-income consumers a variety of counseling services, including educating first-time home buyers about their options, helping families secure affordable rental housing, and offering financial literacy training to those who have experienced credit troubles. Many HFAs also offer foreclosure prevention counseling to help struggling borrowers remain in their homes. HFAs often act as HUD counseling intermediaries for their states, partnering with and overseeing locally based organizations to assist low- and moderate-income borrowers in communities throughout their states.
According to a 2017 HUD study, housing counseling can help homeowners who fall behind on their mortgage payments avoid foreclosure, and new home buyers who received housing counseling were more likely to stay current on their mortgage payments. HUD is conducting further research intended to improve the effectiveness of housing counseling and education programs.
Those state HFAs receiving Housing Counseling program grants for FY 2019 include Colorado Housing and Finance Authority, Connecticut Housing Finance Authority, Georgia Department of Community Affairs/Georgia Housing and Finance Authority, Idaho Housing and Finance Association, Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority, Kentucky Housing Corporation, Louisiana Housing Corporation, MaineHousing, Michigan State Housing Development Authority, Mississippi Home Corporation, New Hampshire Housing Finance Authority, New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency, New York State Housing and Community Renewal, Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency, South Dakota Housing Development Authority, Tennessee Housing Development Agency, Virginia Housing Development Authority, Virgin Islands Housing Finance Authority, and Washington State Housing Finance Commission.
Nearly half of all grant recipients, including 13 HFAs, received an award preference because they will provide housing counseling services to beneficiaries living in designated Opportunity Zones.
OKLAHOMA GRANTEE LIST:
Community Action of Oklahoma City and Oklahoma/Canadian Counties, Inc. Oklahoma City, OK $15,000 – Comprehensive Counseling
In partnership with the community, the mission of Community Action Agency of Oklahoma City and Oklahoma/Canadian Counties Inc. (CAA) is to promote the self-sufficiency of the socially, economically, and culturally disadvantaged citizens of Oklahoma City and Oklahoma and Canadian Counties, and to eliminate the paradox of poverty among these citizens by opening to everyone the opportunity to work, to live in decency, dignity, and worth, and to secure the opportunities needed to become fully self-sufficient. CAA’s mission includes planning and evaluating new types of services, innovative approaches, and strategies for overcoming the root causes of poverty in the community, to include providing affordable housing to low- and moderate-income households. CAA departments include: Head Start, Turning Point Drug and Alcohol, Housing/Home Repair, Special Projects Housing Division, Economic Development, Community Services, Administrative Services, and Fiscal Management. The Housing Division accomplishes weatherization, emergency home repair, and exterior maintenance tasks. The Special Projects Division works with clients on a daily basis either with down payment and closing costs assistance to help income-eligible households purchase a home, housing counseling to help prepare a potential homeowner for the home buying process, and default counseling to help a homebuyer maintain their homeownership. www.caaofokc.com
Community Development Support Association, Inc. Enid, OK $15,174 – Comprehensive Counseling
Community Development Support Association, Inc. (CDSA) is a private nonprofit community action agency established in 1980 and has been a HUD-approved housing counseling agency since 1998. The mission of the agency is to work with others to identify needs, secure resources, and deliver services that improve lives in our communities. The agency does this by employing qualified staff to implement programs based on community needs that have been identified through research and needs assessments. CDSA provides comprehensive housing counseling including homebuyer education, mortgage delinquency/default counseling, homeless services, and services to renters, as well as services that promote energy efficiency. www.cdsaok.org
Housing Authority of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma Hugo, OK $44,409 – Comprehensive Counseling
Established in 1965, the Housing Authority of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma (HACNO) is the Tribally Designated Housing Entity (TDHE) of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. HACNO has provided housing related services to Native Americans living throughout the Choctaw Nation’s 10 county service area in southeastern Oklahoma for over 50 years. Its mission is to provide affordable quality homes, professional management services, and economic growth while promoting opportunities for resident self-sufficiency and safety. Services offered include affordable rental housing, supportive housing for elders, 61 home finance products, home maintenance, modernization, rehabilitation and energy efficiency assistance for low-income homeowners, storm shelter grants, and more. HACNO’s Home Finance Department, established in 2002, helps furthers HACNO’s mission by providing affordable home loan opportunities designed to obtain decent, safe, and sanitary housing, as well as extensive counseling services through its Home Finance Counseling Program. The counseling program’s services include homebuyer education, mortgage delinquency and default resolution, one-on-one budget and credit counseling, and pre- and post-purchase counseling. www.choctawnation.com/tribal-services/housing
Housing Partners of Tulsa, Inc. Tulsa, OK $30,275 – Comprehensive Counseling
Housing Partners of Tulsa, Inc. (HPT), created in 1991, is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation. HPT’s mission is to provide educational services and housing counseling services for low- and moderate-income Tulsans and promote programs leading to self-sufficiency and homeownership. Counselors at HPT strive to empower people to improve their quality of life by creating educational programs to assist low-income homebuyers, homebuyers with disabilities, elderly homebuyers, and homebuyers with language barriers. These potential homebuyers need additional resources made available to them in order to complete their home buying experience. HPT provides the following services: homebuyer education classes, down payment/closing cost assistance, post-purchase counseling, delinquency management, foreclosure/loss mitigation counseling, predatory lending prevention education, default management, fair housing education, and financial literacy. HPT’s objectives are to encourage responsible homeownership, to expand homeownership opportunities, and improve access to affordable housing. Counselors provide guidance to help families and individuals meet the responsibilities of a homeowner. With more than 15 years of experience providing housing assistance, HPT expects to continue providing down payment assistance to first-time homebuyers through the HOME program in conjunction with the City of Tulsa and Tulsa County HOME Consortium. All services are provided at no cost to the potential homebuyer. www.tulsahousing.org
QuickCert, Inc. Tulsa, OK $128,486 – Comprehensive Counseling
QuickCert, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) organization founded in 2007. The organization is a HUD-approved housing counseling agency that offers housing counseling services across the United States and Puerto Rico in English and Spanish. QuickCert, Inc.’s goal is to provide housing counseling services with their primary focus on offering senior services and reverse mortgage counseling. www.quickcert.org