On the Market: State Realtors housing foundation offers grants | SteamboatToday.com

On the Market: State Realtors housing foundation offers grants

— The Steamboat Springs Board of Realtors has announced that the Colorado Association of Realtors Housing Opportunity Foundation is sponsoring a work force housing initiative and offering $100,000 in grants.

Nonprofit and employer housing programs that support work force housing by offering down payment assistance to help workers buy homes in their communities can apply.

"We are very excited about giving those who work in communities a chance to also live and raise their families there," foundation President Bob Fullerton said.

The foundation has instituted guidelines that will help sustain the work force housing program. Grant recipients must demonstrate an ongoing financial and operational capacity to continue the program. The down payment assistance, which is given as a loan to buyers, must comply with all state and federal regulations and be reasonable with the conditions of the market.

For consumers to be eligible for the loans, they must be employed a minimum of 30 hours per week in their community, and they must complete a home-buyer counseling program certified by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development or the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority. The loan will be repaid, and the monies will be used to help future workers purchase a home.

The funding for the initiative came from the National Association of Realtors Ira Gribin Workforce Housing fund to assist a broader range of working people, including retail sales workers, restaurant workers, technicians, office workers and others in occupations that provide the bulk of vital services.

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Nonprofit housing agencies and employers can apply for these funds by submitting their proposal to the Colorado Association of Realtors Housing Opportunity Foundation at 309 Inverness Way South, Englewood, CO 80112. Applications must be received by 5 p.m. Aug. 2 to be considered. The application and guidelines are at http://www.CARHOF.org.

Real Living brokers earn short sale certification

Ralph A. Cantafio, Denise Cantafio, Pamela Landy and Donna Mae Hoots, of Real Living Professional Group, have earned the nationally recognized Short Sales and Foreclosure Resource certification.

The National Association of Realtors offers the SFR certification to those who have studied to understand the structure of these transactions.

A short sale occurs when the sales price is less than what is owed to lien holders, especially banks holding mortgages. Course work focuses on avoiding risky decisions. The SFR certification program includes training on how to qualify buyers and sellers for short sales, negotiate with lenders, work through the nuances of the short sale process and better understand the relationship between short sales and foreclosure.

Denise Cantafio has participated in short sale transactions since 2007.

"A short sale is complicated because lenders are overwhelmed by the numbers," she said. "Until recently, banks seemed unwilling to invest adequate money to process short sale requests. This has resulted in frustrations to both buyers and sellers. I think these types of frustrations will last for a few more years until there has been a lot more inventory absorbed by the market."