Homeownership may be the single most important asset-building strategy for individuals and families. Homes hold significant value and often appreciate over time, and can be passed down from generation to generation. In fact, for two-thirds of homeowners, their house is their largest asset. Yet the rate of homeownership for African American and other families of color lags far behind that of whites.
Increasing the problem, the sub-prime and predatory lending practices that helped to bring about the current foreclosure crisis affected poor and minority homeowners disproportionately. Many thousands of African American and urban households are facing the imminent loss of their home through foreclosure.
The National Urban League and its network of affiliates provide comprehensive homeownership programs and services to address these challenges. To help grow and preserve key individual and community assets, and reach out to those in crisis, the National Urban League has partnered with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), NeighborWorks America, and many national and local nonprofits, financial institutions, and housing experts in providing homeownership assistance programs.
Urban League affiliates employ trained, experienced housing counselors and support staff to provide a wide range of homeownership services in both one-to-one and group settings.
Services provided by Urban League affiliates include:
- Pre-purchase one-to-one homebuyer counseling
- One-to-one foreclosure prevention counseling
- Pre-purchase and post-purchase group homebuyer education
- Financial education
- Reverse, or Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) assistance
- Home maintenance
- Rental housing assistance
- Homeless services
- Homeownership services
The Urban League also participates in the National Foreclosure Mitigation Counseling program (NFMC).