NFCC® Moves Ahead with Envisioning Home Ownership Program to Assist Nearly 60,000 Aspirational Homeowners Annually

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Funding from Wells Fargo Housing Foundation supports development of National Foundation for Credit Counseling® home ownership coaching program for existing financial counseling clients.

National Foundation for Credit Counseling

Renters represent 46% of clients receiving financial counseling by NFCC member agencies, of which 65% aspire to homeownership in one to three years.

Building on the success of My Home Roadmap, the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation has awarded a $350,000 grant to support development of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®) Envisioning Home Ownership© program. The program stems from a recent study that identified approximately 60,000 existing financial counseling clients annually, indicating a strong interest in homeownership and pre-purchase housing coaching. Once launched, this new program will assist borrowers in overcoming both real and perceived obstacles to homeownership with a focus on clients who have the desire and capacity to become mortgage ready in six to 18 months. The Foundation’s grant will enable the NFCC to develop housing coaching curriculum, materials and training for NFCC certified counselors to quickly identify client impediments to homeownership, and apply the appropriate coaching interventions needed to help consumers progress towards that goal.

“This support from the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation will help us develop a robust program that can make sustainable homeownership possible for thousands of people each year,” said Acting NFCC President and Chief Executive Officer Jeff Faulkner. “Our member agencies are uniquely positioned to provide the type of coaching that can help aspirational home owners understand their full potential and take the necessary steps to realize their dream.”

This initiative started in 2017 with the Envisioning Home Ownership Research Survey, which found that clients that are already working with NFCC-certified financial counselors represent a substantial pipeline of aspiring homeowners, opening opportunities for housing pre-purchase coaching, information and planning through NFCC-affiliated agencies. Renters represent 46% of clients receiving financial counseling by NFCC member agencies, of which 65% aspire to homeownership in one to three years with statistically higher interest in female, black, Hispanic and rural households. NFCC members’ ability to coach and prepare interested clients into mortgage-ready borrowers can result in higher levels of home purchasing, and, in turn, strengthen communities and the economy.

NFCC will launch a proof of concept pilot in June to demonstrate the viability of the Envisioning Homeownership program. Information gained from that pilot will inform the next stages of program development, supported by funding from the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation. NFCC’s Envisioning Home Ownership program launch anticipated in January 2019, will equip NFCC member agencies with a new homeownership coaching program to help existing clients take important steps toward home ownership, while working with participating lenders. The program will guide clients along the path of improving their credit scores, increasing their savings, and preparing them with the financial education needed to become successful homeowners.

The NFCC currently offers a range of housing counseling programs through a network of HUD approved member agencies. To learn more about these programs or to connect with an NFCC-certified housing counselor, visit https://www.nfcc.org/our-services/housing-counseling/ or call toll-free 800-388-2227.

About NFCC

Founded in 1951, the National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®) is the nation’s first and largest nonprofit dedicated to improving people’s financial well-being. With a national network of member offices serving 50 states and Puerto Rico, our NFCC Certified Credit Counselors are financial advocates, empowering millions of consumers to take charge of their finances through one-on-one financial reviews that address credit card debt, student loans, housing decisions and overall money management. Make one of the best financial decisions of your life. For expert guidance and advice, call (800) 388-2227 or visit http://www.nfcc.org today.

About the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation

In 2017, the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation donated $22.7 million in support of affordable housing initiatives serving low- and moderate-income households – including for seniors, veterans and families – through community revitalization efforts. Since its inception 25 years ago, the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation has invested more than $212.7 million to such efforts, along with mobilizing more than 4.75 million team member volunteer hours to build and rehabilitate nearly 7,600 homes and counting.

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