Down Payment Assistance Programs Further President's Goal of Increasing Minority Homeownership

Neighborhood Gold(R) Down Payment Assistance Program Removes the Largest

Barrier to Meeting the President's Goal of Increasing Minority Homeownership

By 5.5 Million

Oct 16, 2002, 01:00 ET from Neighborhood Gold

    OREM, Utah, Oct. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- A new report entitled 'Economic
 Benefits of Increasing Minority Homeownership' released yesterday by the U.S.
 Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) states that meeting
 President Bush's goal of expanding minority homeownership by 5.5 million
 families will generate an additional $256 billion for the housing sector of
 the U.S. economy, as well as create jobs and spur growth in other economic
 sectors.  HUD has cited the down payment as the greatest barrier to owning a
 home.  Nonprofit down payment assistance programs eliminate the down payment
 barrier and allow minority homeownership to progress toward the President's
     "Down payment assistance programs, such as Neighborhood Gold, were created
 to help minorities, single parent families and low and moderate income
 families achieve homeownership by providing a grant to use toward the down
 payment," says Neighborhood Gold president Rich Ferguson.
     HUD estimated that last year 34 million people were renting in the U.S.
 An estimated 30 percent of those renters, or 10.2 million people, could afford
 a mortgage but did not have enough money saved to afford the several thousand
 dollar down payment.  The success and increase in use of down payment
 assistance programs that has occurred in the last few years is directly
 related to the need for their service.
     In the report, increasing homeownership is cited as a national priority
 for many reasons:
      1)  Despite increases in minority homeownership over the last decade, a
          significant "homeownership gap" still exists.
      2)  Increasing homeownership spurs job growth.  For example, according to
          the HUD report, building 1,000 single-family homes creates 2,448
          full-time jobs in fields such as construction, transportation, trade
          and other locally based services.
      3)  Increasing homeownership also increases the demand for household
          goods such as furniture, appliances and lawn care supplies.
          According to the report, increasing minority homeownership by
          5.5 million families will increase spending on home improvements and
          household products by almost $36 billion.
      4)  Homeownership is a source of stability and financial security for
          America's families and communities.
     Neighborhood Gold has already gifted more than $100 million to more than
 20,000 homebuyers around the country to use toward the down payment on a home.
 As one of the top national down payment programs, Neighborhood Gold has
 established a reputation among real estate professionals as having the fastest
 and most streamlined grant application process as well as the best customer
 service.  Neighborhood Gold was also the first to introduce the Mortgage
 Payment Protection Plan to keep down payment assistance homebuyers in their
 homes by automatically enrolling homebuyers into an insurance plan that covers
 up to six months of mortgage payments should the borrower unexpectedly lose
 his/her job.
     About Neighborhood Gold
     Neighborhood Gold was established in February 2000 to market the down
 payment assistance offered by The Buyer's Fund, a 501(C)(3) nonprofit
 organization formed to increase homeownership opportunity.  Recently,
 Neighborhood Gold, in conjunction with several other down payment assistance
 programs, formed the Homeownership Alliance of Nonprofit Downpayment providers
 (HAND), to establish ethical business practices and ensure that down payment
 assistance programs are up-to-date on current housing rules and regulations.
 For more information about receiving a down payment grant from Neighborhood
 Gold, homebuyers should call 1-888-627-3023, or visit the website at .
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SOURCE Neighborhood Gold