Visclosky Announces Federal Support for Housing Counseling in Northwest Indiana

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Grants to Help Families and Individuals Improve Housing Conditions

Washington, D.C. – October 14, 2009 – (RealEstateRama) — Congressman Pete Visclosky today announced that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has issued three grants to Northwest Indiana for housing counseling.  The grants, which will go to the Housing Authority of the City of Hammond, Housing Opportunities, Inc., in Porter County, and the Lake County Community Economic Development Department, are intended to help families and individuals improve their housing conditions.

“A decent, stable housing situation is one of the keys to living a productive life,” said Visclosky.  “These grants will help expand homeownership opportunities in Northwest Indiana, improve access to affordable housing, and advance people’s financial literacy.  They will help us rebuild our local economy and raise the quality of life for everybody in the region.”

The grants may support a wide variety of housing counseling services for homebuyers, homeowners, low- to moderate-income renters, and the homeless with the objectives of improving financial literacy, expanding and preserving homeownership, and improving access to affordable housing.  In addition to helping families and individuals improve their housing conditions and meet the responsibilities of tenancy and homeownership, counselors may also help borrowers avoid inflated appraisals, unreasonably high interest rates, unaffordable repayment terms, and other conditions that can result in a loss of equity, increased debt, default, and foreclosure.  What is more, counselors may help elderly homeowners convert equity in their homes into income that can be used to pay for medical costs, living expenses, and other expenses.  The Housing authority of the City of Hammond will receive a $37,480 grant, Housing Opportunities, Inc., in Porter County will receive a $40,000 grant, and the Lake County Community Economic Development Department will receive a $45,000 grant.

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