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What is Restore Our Homes?
Restore Our Homes – a.k.a. Foreclosure Prevention, a Signature Program of the National Urban League – is a wide-ranging multi-media campaign to raise awareness about foreclosure prevention and motivate homeowners to take advantage of free, intensive counseling by certified counselors. The campaign is designed to overcome individuals’ and families’ isolation, embarrassment or lack of knowledge about community resources.
The main goal of Restore Our Homes is to increase financial stability and property values in African American communities that were harmed by subprime loans and foreclosures. Additional goals are to improve the services of Urban League affiliates through technical assistance and training, and to ensure that affiliates have enough staff and resources to serve increasing community needs.
Under the Restore Our Homes banner, 38 Urban League affiliates connect people to housing counseling, homebuyer education, financial literacy workshops, credit counseling, fair housing advocacy, and foreclosure prevention assistance. HUD-certified loss-mitigation counselors show current and prospective borrowers how to make good decisions, repair credit reports, refrain from making poor refinancing deals on existing homes and identify loan products that are most likely to lead to mortgage defaults and foreclosure. Families who are unable to avoid foreclosure get help to find alternate rental housing and extra services such as workforce development, financial literacy, and adult education.
Important actions include:
- Educate homeowners before they enter into inappropriate refinancing loans
- Engage delinquent mortgage borrowers early so they never reach foreclosure
- Counsel homebuyers before and after their purchase to avoid predatory loans
- Negotiate workout agreements on behalf of delinquent borrowers to save homes
- Intervene with civil and criminal legal action against predatory lenders
- Advocate for legislative reform to discourage inappropriate home lending
Where is it?
How big is it?
Since its launch in 2009, this program has served approximately 100,000 clients.
What have Restore Our Homes participants achieved?
Nearly 40% of households served were able to avoid foreclosure and remain in their homes.
Who sponsors it?
- NeighborWorks America (under the Congressionally-chartered National Foreclosure Mitigation and Counseling program)
- Community Development Block Grant