Albany, NY – May 14, 2010 – (RealEstateRama) — The State Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR) today announced 26 awards totaling $9.6 Million that will help more than 97,000 New York homeowners avoid foreclosure. The grants were made to not-for-profit housing counselors to provide outreach, education, financial counseling and legal representation to vulnerable homeowners with subprime mortgages.
The awards were made through DHCR’s Subprime Foreclosure Prevention Services Program, part of a comprehensive plan initiated in New York State to address the foreclosure crisis.
Governor David A. Paterson said the awards will help protect families and entire communities from the devastating effects of foreclosure. “Foreclosure affects everyone. Families suffer the loss of their homes, neighborhoods start to decline, and communities deteriorate. That’s why New York State has a thorough plan in place to address the foreclosure crisis and help families keep their homes in this difficult economy. Making quality, professional housing counselors available free of charge is an important part of this effort.”
Brian Lawlor, Commissioner of DHCR and President/CEO of ‘nyhomes,’ emphasized the importance of avoiding scams by reaching out to professional housing counselors and legal service providers who offer help to homeowners free of charge. “New York State’s program provides counseling and legal services for homeowners in every county of the state who entered into a subprime or unconventional mortgage. Since the program’s inception, more than 20,000 families have registered to receive some type of foreclosure assistance. The funding announced today will help even more people who are at risk of foreclosure, providing the guidance they need to make informed decisions and avoid unscrupulous scam artists who prey on homeowners in crisis.”
Grants were made to housing counselors in regions throughout the state, including New York City, Central and Western New York, and Long Island, and awards were made to provide additional legal support in hard-hit areas.
All agencies awarded grants have had great success providing foreclosure prevention services and have exceeded their projected goals last year, helping many more homeowners than they had proposed in their applications for funding.
The 2009-10 New York State budget appropriated nearly $22 million to continue the State’s foreclosure prevention effort started in the previous budget year. The new funds have been allocated from the Fiscal Stabilization Fund provided to the State under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).
In addition to funding counseling and legal services, New York’s extensive response to the mortgage crisis includes: mandatory settlement conferences to protects tenants from premature evictions; outreach and loan modification events that bring homeowners face-to-face with lenders and servicers; mortgage programs such as the new forty-year fixed rate mortgage through the State of New York Mortgage Agency; neighborhood stabilization initiatives to return foreclosed properties to productive use and enforcement actions through the creation of a Mortgage Fraud Unit within the Banking Department.
Organizations receiving awards today include:
- New York Legal Assistance Group $571,396
- Urban Justice Center $378,630
- Greater Sheepshead Bay Development Corporation $385,000
- HOME Headquarters, Inc. $211,120
- Utica Neighborhood Housing Services, Inc. $116,688
- Asian Americans for Equality $494,460
- Community Housing Innovation $358,850
- Legal Services of New York- Bronx (dba Bronx Legal Services) $483,000
- LIFE, Inc. (Labor and Industry for Education) $616,000
- Long Island Housing Partnership, Inc. $394,680
- Community Organization of Southern Brooklyn $157,500
- New York Mortgage Coalition $522,400
- Albany County Rural Housing Alliance $461,074
- Queens Legal Services Corporation $440,669
- Queens Volunteer Lawyers Project, Inc. $110,940
- Brooklyn Neighborhoods Improvement Association, Inc. $180,000
- Belmont Shelter Corp. $304,500
- Empire Justice Center – Rochester $667,962
- Marketview Heights Association, Inc. $132,500
- La Fuerza Unida, Inc. $223,184
- NHS of New York City, Inc. $433,020
- Community Development Corporation of Long Island $689,716
- Nassau Suffolk Law Services Committee, Inc. $616,256
- Albany County Rural Housing Alliance, Inc. $27,040
- Ridgewood Bushwick Senior Citizens Council, Inc. $480,000
- Common Law, Inc. $157,500
Additional information on the awards, and a list of Foreclosure Prevention Counselors by county is available on the DHCR website: http://nysdhcr.gov/Programs/ForeclosurePrevention/