YVHA education class earns statewide certification

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— The Yampa Valley Housing Authority has received state certification for its homebuyer education class.

Housing Authority Executive Director Elizabeth Black said the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority recently audited the local program and determined that the monthly homebuyer education class hosted by the Housing Authority, or YVHA, meets statewide curriculum standards. The positive audit results mean the YVHA, which implements affordable housing across Routt County, is now considered a certified homebuyer education agency.

"The Colorado Housing and Finance Authority strongly believes in the benefits of homebuyer education," said Milroy Alexander, the state authority's executive director. "We require it of all our borrowers, and it is offered at no cost to the borrower through agencies such as YVHA. The Colorado Housing and Finance Authority is committed to helping people achieve home ownership, but also to keeping them in their homes once they have made that important decision. It is critical that people understand the steps to homeownership and are fully prepared for the responsibilities that come with owning a home."

YVHA started its homebuyer education class in March of 2005 after Black aligned the course curriculum to meet state standards.

"The class covers a number of topics that focus on renting versus owning, personal money management, developing a spending plan and understanding the importance of credit," Black said. "Then, we cover mortgage payments and the significant components of a real estate transaction, and present sample documents that buyers must sign at closing. This orientation is beneficial to first time homebuyers because they become familiar with the process, making the buying experience not so overwhelming compared to those who have no exposure to the complexity of becoming a homeowner."

A certificate of completion from a homebuyer education class also is a prerequisite for down payment assistance. YVHA has several sources of down payment assistance loans for low- to moderate-income people attempting to buy their first home.

"The state of Colorado is convinced that homebuyer education dramatically reduces the risk of foreclosure, especially for first time homebuyers," Black said. "Therefore, the class is a requirement before an application may be submitted for down payment assistance."

Classes are offered monthly and are usually held in Room 200 of Bogue Hall at the Colorado Mountain College campus in Steamboat. The next class is scheduled for Saturday, April 14, from 8:30 a.m. to about 3:30 p.m. Classes also are scheduled for May 19 and June 2.

For more information, call YVHA at 870-0167 or the Colorado housing authority at 800-877-2432, ext. 376. Information can also be found on the Web, at www.colohfa.org.

If you go

What: First-time homebuyer seminar with Fannie Mae and funding partners for interested banks, mortgage lenders, real estate agents, developers and housing advocates.

When: Wednesday from 8:45 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Where: Room 300 in Bogue Hall at Colorado Mountain College's Alpine Campus in Steamboat Springs, at 1330 Bob Adams Dr.

Cost: Registration is $25. (Please RSVP by calling 870-0167).

Contact: For more information contact Elizabeth Black at 870-0167, or e-mail eablack@springsips.com

Comments

corduroy 7 years, 1 month ago

I'm confused here: First they say the class is offered at no cost to the buyer: "'The Colorado Housing and Finance Authority strongly believes in the benefits of homebuyer education,' said Milroy Alexander, the state authority's executive director. 'We require it of all our borrowers, and it is offered at no cost to the borrower through agencies such as YVHA.'" Then they provide information about upcoming classes and there IS a charge. I'm interested in buying a home, but I'm on a budget, shouldn't they be a little more accomodating to people looking for affordable housing by offering it free? I'd tip the speaker!

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