To coincide with National Homeownership Month, Northwest Impact, the Northwest Side Community Development Corporation’s (NWSCDC) housing initiative, in partnership with Associated Bank and GreenPath Financial Wellness, hosted a local homebuyers workshop on Saturday, June 25 at Century City Tower at 4201 North 27th Street on Milwaukee’s northwest side.
The homebuyer workshop is part of Northwest Impact’s goal to reduce foreclosures in the City of Milwaukee through re-purchasing, reconstruction and re-sale to owner-occupant buyers. Northwest Impact focuses on three specific Milwaukee neighborhoods: Garden Homes, Century City and Little Canada.
”My personal goal is to clear misconceptions regarding finance, credit and lending when buying a home,” said Northwest Impact’s Director of Housing Willie Smith. “I enjoy helping individuals and families reach their goal of homeownership. They take pride in owning a home, which, in turn, benefits the City of Milwaukee.”
The workshop consists of three areas of financial advice for future homeowners:
- Northwest Impact provides one-on-one counseling with a realtor, explaining the home buying process and providing a comprehensive list of available Northwest Impact properties.
- GreenPath Financial Wellness educates attendees on the basics of personal finance, consumer credit and financial best practices; and
- Associated Bank provides an overview of the lending process, including a list of criteria lenders look for and a review of their lending products.
Raising the importance of financial awareness during the home buying process is at the heart of Northwest Impact’s efforts. The partnerships with Associated Bank and GreenPath Financial Wellness provide a multi-level approach to the program’s success. This includes Associated Bank’s Buyer’s Edge pre-approved mortgage program, which gives prospective homebuyers a head start on finding the home of their dreams.
“Associated Bank is proud to partner with the Northwest Side Community Development Corporation to help people in our community prepare for homeownership,” said Shiela Roberts, AVP, CRA Residential Loan Officer at Associated Bank. “Together, we provide education through workshops about credit, budgeting, qualifying for a mortgage loan and more. In addition, we provide financial assistance through the Associated Bank HELP Grant and other grants for individuals who qualify. We also offer a credit builder program to help individuals establish good credit in order to purchase a home.”
Since beginning in 2013, Northwest Impact has helped over 200 Milwaukee residents learn more about the rewards of homeownership and how to plan for managing a mortgage and a home.
“I was living in an area where Northwest Impact signs were posted about the workshop,” said Graylan Morris, a current renter preparing to purchase his home through the Northwest Impact program. Through these workshops, I learned to manage my finances and keep a credit score that would show I could qualify for a loan. I think that was really the most helpful part – learning how to understand my credit score and paying bills. Now, I’m on track to close on a house in the next couple of months.”
More information on Northwest Impact and their next Homebuyers Workshops in July may be found at www.northwestimpact.com.