State Targets Peoria to Promote Homebuyer Down Payment Assistance and Foreclosure Prevention Help

May 18 event will offer up to $10,000 for residents to buy a home and up to $35,000 to struggling homeowners to keep their home

PEORIA – May 10, 2013 – (RealEstateRama) — State and city officials today announced Governor Pat Quinn’s plans to bring affordable homebuying options and foreclosure prevention relief to Peoria residents. The state’s housing finance agency, the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) will host a comprehensive housing event on Saturday, May 18 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Peoria Civic Center to give area residents direct access to state programs that can help homebuyers buy a home affordably or assist current homeowners to save their homes from foreclosure.

“Gov. Quinn recognizes that the home is the cornerstone of stability and growth for families and communities,” said Mary R. Kenney, IHDA Executive Director. “Keeping people in their homes and helping families achieve the American dream of homeownership strengthens families and communities and is an important step towards getting Illinois’ housing market and economy back on track.”

“The City of Peoria is very pleased with the state’s rigorous efforts to remind Peoria homebuyers and struggling homeowners of existing state programs that may aid residents,” said Councilman Timothy Riggenbach. “We welcome the partnership with the state and our local HUD-certified counseling organizations, METEC and Novadebt that help to keep our families in their homes and strengthen our communities.”

Help for Homebuyers
For homebuyers, local lenders will be on hand to pre-qualify homebuyers and help them apply for up to $10,000 in down payment assistance with a fixed-rate 30-year mortgage. Some homebuyers may also be eligible to earn more than $18,000 in federal tax credits over the life of the loan (based on a 30-year $128,000 loan at four percent interest.)

In March 2013, the Governor expanded the Illinois Building Blocks program to include Peoria and nine other communities. The program revitalizes communities by turning vacant properties into valuable homebuyer opportunities for low- to moderate-income families. Residents wishing to buy a vacant home in the City of Peoria may qualify for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage and the full $10,000 in down payment assistance.

Housing counselors will also be available at the event to advise and guide homebuyers to find the best program for their needs.

Potential homebuyers should visit www.ihda.org to register for the event.

Help for Homeowners
The May 18 event will also offer help to struggling homeowners looking to hold on to their homes. At the event, housing counselors will connect homeowners to the resource that is right for their situation. Loan officers from several major mortgage servicers will be present to discuss a loan modification or refinancing options with homeowners. Homeowners can also be evaluated for the U.S. Treasury-funded Illinois Hardest Hit program, which provides eligible homeowners up to $35,000 in financial assistance to reinstate their mortgage and/or help pay their monthly mortgage obligation.

The help for homeowners is provided through the Illinois Foreclosure Prevention Network (IFPN), a state initiative led by IHDA. Since the Network was launched in February 2012, more than 620,000 people across the state have been connected to FREE and trusted foreclosure help, including 75,600 homeowners having received counseling. Studies show that housing counseling nearly doubles the chances of mortgage modifications and reduces the likelihood of re-default by at least 67 percent.

Go to www.keepyourhomeillinois.org or call toll free 1-855-KEEP-411 to learn more about IFPN and the Illinois Hardest Hit program.

According to CoreLogic, as of January 2013, 4.4 percent of homes in Illinois are in foreclosure, with Illinois ranking fifth in the nation behind Florida, New Jersey, New York and Maine. However, even though Illinois’ foreclosure rate shows some signs of slowing down, foreclosures continue to be a challenge. As of January 2013, Illinois had 83,313 homes in foreclosure, a 3.8 percent drop over the previous month. However, 154,892 homeowners are 90 or more days delinquent, putting them at-risk of foreclosure.

Similarly, in the Peoria/Pekin metropolitan area, as of January, the number of foreclosures dropped by 2.5 percent to 1,086, but there are still 2,233 homeowners that are 90 or more days delinquent.

The May 18 event embodies the Governor’s three-pronged comprehensive approach to reviving the state’s economy through 1) foreclosure prevention to keep homeowners in their homes; 2) rehabilitating vacant properties to create valuable homeownership opportunities; and 3) promoting healthy home buying by increasing opportunities in the marketplace with affordable mortgages for homebuyers.

About the Illinois Housing Development Authority
IHDA (www.ihda.org) is a self-supporting state agency that finances the creation and the preservation of affordable housing across Illinois. Since its creation in 1967, IHDA has allocated more than $11.6 billion and financed approximately 225,000 affordable units across the state.

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