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HUD Awards$185,000 in Counseling Grants to Help Families Find and Keep Housing in SC

HUD funding critical to support six counseling agencies in South Carolina

COLUMBIA,SC – March 19, 2012 – As part of its continuing effort to help familiesfind decent housing and to prevent future foreclosures, the U.S.Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced $185,543 inhousing counseling grants to six organizations in South Carolina. Seechart below.  As a result of this funding, South Carolina householdswill have a greater opportunity to find housing or keep their currenthomes.  In addition to the funding to these state and local agencies,HUD is awarding $29 million to national, regional and multi-statecounseling agencies that may also have an impact in South Carolinacommunities.            

“The HUD-approved counseling agenciesthis funding supports are crucial in helping struggling families on aone-to-one basis to manage their money, navigate the homebuyingprocess, and secure their financial futures,” said HUD SoutheastRegional Administrator Ed Jennings, Jr. “We fought hard to persuadeCongress to restore funding for housing counseling in HUD’s budget andnow we’re working to make these important resources available as quicklyas possible.” 
Housing counseling grants will assist families in becoming homeowners,many for the first time, and remaining homeowners after their purchase.  They also provide assistance to renters and the homeless, and offerfinancial literacy training to individuals and families.
 
“These funds are complemented by the roughly $2.5 billion provided tothe states as part of the $25 billion mortgage servicing settlement.Most states can use those funds for foreclosure prevention activitiessuch as housing counseling and legal aid services,” added RegionalAdministrator Jennings.
 
More than $36 million in grant funds will directly support the housingcounseling services provided by 27 national and regional organizations, 6multi-state organizations, 16 State Housing Finance Agencies (SHFAs)and 419 local housing counseling agencies.  In addition, HUD is awarding$2 million to three national organizations to train counselors who willreceive the instruction and certification necessary to effectivelyassist families with their housing needs.
 
Counseling agencies will also receive $4 million to help assist seniorcitizens seeking reverse mortgages or Home Equity Conversion Mortgages(HECM).  These agencies will provide counseling for the rapidly growingnumber of elderly homeowners who seek to convert equity in their homesinto income that can be used to pay for home improvements, medicalcosts, and other living expenses.
 
National and regional agencies distribute much of HUD’s housingcounseling grant funding to community-based grassroots organizationsthat provide information and guidance to low- and moderate-incomefamilies seeking to improve their housing conditions. In addition, theselarger organizations help improve the quality of housing counselingservices and enhance coordination among  counseling providers.
 
Grant recipients help homebuyers and homeowners realistically evaluatetheir readiness for a home purchase, understand their financing anddownpayment options, and navigate what can be an extremely confusing anddifficult process.  In addition to providing counseling to homebuyersand renters, these organizations assist homeless persons in finding thetransitional housing they need to move toward a permanent place to live.
 
Grantees also help combat predatory lending by helping unwary borrowersreview their loan documentation, and avoid potential mortgage scams,unreasonably high interest rates, inflated appraisals, unaffordablerepayment terms, and other conditions that can result in a loss ofequity, increased debt, default, and even foreclosure.  Likewise,foreclosure prevention counseling helps homeowners facing delinquency ordefault employ strategies, including expense reduction, negotiationwith lenders and loan servicers, and loss mitigation, to avoidforeclosure. With foreclosures at critical levels nationwide, theseservices are more important than ever.
 
HUD awards annual grants under the housing counseling program through acompetitive process. Organizations that apply for grants must beHUD-approved and are subject to monitoring and oversight to maintaintheir HUD-approved status.
 
Read a summary of each grant, organized by state.
 
About HUD
HUD’s mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusivecommunities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working tostrengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protectconsumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental home; utilizehousing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive andsustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the wayHUD does business. More information about HUD and its programs isavailable on the Internet at www.hud.gov and http://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.

 
 
HUD Grants will support the following state and local agencies:

  • Charleston – CCCS Family Services, Inc. – $28,606
  • Charleston – CCCS Family Services, Inc. – $38,417 – HECM
  • Charleston – Charleston Trident Urban League, Inc.$15,000
  • Graniteville – Community Development & Improvement Corp – $15,592
  • Greenville – Greenville County Human Relations Commission – $29,197
  • Greenville – Greenville County Human Relations Commission – $21,633 – HECM
  • Greenville – Upstate Homeless Coalition of South Carolina – $20,915
  • Spartanburg – Spartanburg Housing Development Corp. – $16,183 

TOTAL $185,543