Some homebuyers may save big with homeownership education

Partaking in homeownership education may help you qualify for discounts and assistance when purchasing your home.

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Buying a home is a major financial decision and can be very overwhelming.  Home buyers who take an educational class from a HUD housing counselor have been shown to decrease by one-third that the new homebuyer will become 90 days or more delinquent on their mortgage payments within the first two years, according to a recent NeighborWorks study.  Local housing counselors provide information and assistance so that purchasers can confidently buy an affordable home that are affordable to keep.

Despite the statistics, homeownership education and counseling is not required even for first-time buyers unless the purchasers are taking advantage of special loan products. A program that requires Homeownership counseling is the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) down payment assistance program.  A certificate of completion can provide the home buyer with up to $7500 toward their down payment and closing costs.  Find a local experienced loan officer to work with.  Other banks and local municipal programs also offer down payment assistance.

As the correlation between successful homeownership and education continues to be observed, homeowners, especially first-time homebuyers will need access to education. The MSHDA and HUD websites contain lists of certified counseling agencies. In addition, there are Michigan State University Extension Finance and Homeownership educators located throughout the state of Michigan who are HUD certified and teach classes. You can visit MI Money Health to find Events plus more information about taking a course in-person, by webinar with a live instructor, or self-paced online learning. You can find a certified homeownership counselor or program being offered in your area.

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