United Way announces a $150,000 investment aimed at advancing foreclosure prevention programs
BOSTON – United Way of Massachusetts Bay & Merrimack Valley in partnership with United Ways of New Bedford and Brockton, today announced a new investment of nearly $150,000 to advance foreclosure prevention services for Massachusetts families. In 2008, more than 12,000 foreclosure deeds were recorded in Massachusetts, more than triple the amount in 2006. With this investment, United Way aims to enable more homeowners across eastern Massachusetts to gain the financial education and counseling they need to work out an affordable mortgage and remain housed.
The following Massachusetts agencies will receive United Way foreclosure prevention grants:
Viet Aid and Metropolitan of Boston Housing Partnership will receive a United Way grant to provide foreclosure prevention services in Greater Boston. According to Foreclosuresmass.com, 409 foreclosures were started in the last three months in Boston.
On the North Shore, Lynn Housing Authority and Neighborhood Development for foreclosure prevention in the City of Lynn and neighboring communities. In the last three months, 275 foreclosures have begun in Lynn.
In the Merrimack Valley, Community Teamwork Incorporated will receive a United Way foreclosure prevention grant to serve the City of Lowell and the greater Merrimack Valley region. According to UMass Lowell, 288 foreclosures were opened in Haverhill, Lowell and Lawrence in the past three months.
Quincy Community Action Programs will receive a United Way foreclosure grant to provide services to the Quincy, Weymouth, Braintree, Randolph, Dedham, Rockland, Holbrook, Milton and Hull areas. A combined 217 foreclosures have started in these towns in the past three months.
Consumer Credit Counseling Services of Southern New England will receive a United Way foreclosure grant to provide services to New Bedford, Fall River, Greater Brockton, Taunton, Bridgewater and surrounding communities. 210 foreclosures have been opened in the last three months in Brockton alone. Relative to the other towns and cities in the state in the last 60 days, Brockton had more foreclosed properties than 363 Massachusetts towns.
The majority of the investment was made possible through a grant from the Division of Banks, an agency within the Office of Consumer Affairs. Results from United Way’s 2008 investments in foreclosure prevention include:
- $100,000 in leveraged matching funds from corporate partners and individual donors
- 275 at-risk homeowners counseled
- 54 homeowners stabilized and 200 homeowners currently in the process of being stabilized.
- Additional Foreclosure counselors were hired and trained.
- The formation of a Peer Learning Community made up of counselors serving over 20 cities and towns
- The co-organization, sponsorship and facilitation of a statewide foreclosure prevention best practices summit (over 60 counselors attended).
- 270 homeowners facing foreclosure received assistance from United Way’s 2-1-1information and referral line
To access help preventing a foreclosure or eviction, Massachusetts residents are encouraged to call
2-1-1, United Way’s free and confidential hotline for health and human services.