Unexpected illness, family circumstances or extended unemployment all are common reasons why borrowers may have trouble making monthly mortgage payments. Borrowers should discuss the situation with their lender to see what kind of options or assistance the lender may be able to provide. Both local and national non-profit organizations can help with housing-related financial problems.
The Alliance for Stabilizing our Communities
The Alliance for Stabilizing our Communities, or ASC, is a collaborative effort of the National Urban League, the National Council of La Raza and the National Coalition of Asian Pacific American Community Development. The ASC is funded by a $3.4 million grant from Bank of America, and particularly focuses on at-risk multicultural families. It holds housing fairs throughout the country in high foreclosure areas, but borrowers also can contact the Alliance for Stabilizing our Communities at 1-866-842-3391.
Catholic Charities launched its Housing Counseling Program in the 1990s to manage the housing assistance functions of local Catholic Charity offices. Its specialists help homeowners with mortgage modifications and foreclosures, along with a variety of other housing-related services. Homeowners in need of assistance should contact their nearest Catholic Charity location.
The NID-Housing Counseling Agency
The NID-Housing Counseling Agency is a national, non-profit agency dedicated to helping homeowners who are facing foreclosure. It works with lenders on behalf of the borrower to negotiate mortgage terms that may help borrowers stay in their homes and avoid foreclosure. NID-HCA hosts educational workshops and provides individual counseling services. Borrowers can call 877-964-3422 for more information or to apply for assistance.
NeighborWorks America provides an assortment of services to homeowners struggling to make mortgage payments and facing foreclosure. It provides services throughout the United States and Puerto Rico through its network of more than 230 community development organizations in more than 4,400 locations. Homeowners can contact NeighborWorks America at 202-220-2300.
Kimberly Goodwin has a Ph.D. in finance from the University of Alabama and is an associate professor of finance and the Parham Bridges Chair of Real Estate at the University of Southern Mississippi. She publishes in top real estate journals as well as on her blog, Your Finance Professor. Goodwin is also the managing editor of the Journal of Housing Research.