Get prepped to buy a home with Homebuyer Education classes

Have you considered purchasing a home but still have questions or concerns? If so, Neighborhood Housing Partnership of Greater Springfield’s (NHP) free Homebuyer Education Course could be just what you need. The second session of the online class, presented using Zoom, will be from noon to 2 p.m. Tuesdays, Nov. 3, 10, and 17.

“Knowledge gained during this course empowers the buyer, introduces key partners like realtors and lenders, and explains industry terminology,” says Jan Jones, housing specialist with NHP. “Without this information, a new buyer is often caught like ‘a deer in the headlights.’”

Jones focuses primarily on pre-purchase homebuyer education and financial coaching. She has been with NHP since 2012 and is a nationally certified HUD housing counselor.

NHP is a non-profit 501c3 organization dedicated to increasing and preserving homeownership, promoting the development and rehabilitation of housing, and supporting vibrant, healthy neighborhoods.

NHP offered the same course in October, with eight people attending the 3-week program. The classes are both sponsored through a grant from PNC Bank. Jones says the fall sessions are NHP’s first-time offering its long-established onsite course virtually.

“High rent and affordable housing are driving tenants to explore purchasing. In light of COVID, mortgage credit has tightened but is not unreasonable,” Jones says. “More than ever, buyers need comprehensive education to understand what makes a successful homeowner – the importance of having savings, paying bills on time, maintaining their investment. Having safe and stable housing through homeownership offers real security for families during these uncertain times.”

Attendees of the Homebuyers Education Course will join live experts and learn about down payment assistance programs, credit, budgeting, understanding the mortgage loan process, the loan closing, avoiding predatory lenders, home maintenance and more.

NHP outcomes between 2002 and 2019 include:

  • 3,700 families have received homebuyer education and/or financial counseling
  • 52 percent of homebuyer education graduates have purchased a home
  • NHP has facilitated 1,240 mortgages, totaling $105.7 million
  • NHP and lender down payment assistance remove the barrier of out-of-pocket resources and total $2.68 million.

Homebuyers interested in the free November Homebuyer Education Course should email their name and phone number to [email protected].

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Read more articles by Darci Jordan.