New HUD grants
The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has announced an award of over $42 million to go toward housing counseling to support home buyers as well as prevent future foreclosures.
The grants are expected to support hundreds of thousands of households, through free assistance on avoiding mortgage scams as well as foreclosure scams, and teaching buyers how to rent or buy a home. The grants will be distributed to 468 state and local organizations.
Where the funds come from
In a struggling economy, it is important to know where government funds come from and go to, with this particular fund coming from the fiscal 2012 budget that restored HUD-approved housing counseling after funds were cut by Congress to aide that type of charitable works in 2011.
“These funds are complemented by the roughly $2.5 billion provided to the states as part of the $25 billion mortgage servicing settlement. Most states can use those funds for foreclosure prevention activities such as housing counseling and legal aid services,” HUD Secretary, Shaun Donovan said in a statement.
Counseling millions of Americans
Donovan said, “Housing counseling works for families that are in need, but also for entire neighborhoods and our housing market more broadly.”
HUD says over 6 million families have been helped in the last three years by HUD-approved counselors, noting that roughly 90 percent of families who work with a housing counselor to avoid foreclosure and manage their money continue to live in their homes nearly 18 months after receiving assistance.
In a statement, HUD noted that “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 monitoring and oversight to maintain their HUD-approved status.”