Thanksgiving is a time when we slow down and think about all that we are grateful for and those who are most important to us. One of the most important relationships that we must remember is that of the homebuyers and homeowners who we have helped throughout the year.
As an industry, we often focus on numbers and goals, but let us step back and think about the people who are touched by our work. There are families that will be celebrating their first holiday season in their own homes this year. Others believed that they wouldn’t be celebrating anymore Thanksgivings in their homes, but were proven wrong thanks to a modification.
Hearing the personal stories of people who have achieved the dream of homeownership helps me to keep what we do in perspective.
Take Curtis, who participated in HomeFree-USA’s Homebuyer Program. Once homeless, Curtis transformed his life and bought his first home. However, five years later, Curtis lost his job and had trouble paying his mortgage. HomeFree-USA once again helped him to secure a modification and now he has recovered financially and will be able to celebrate the holidays in his home.
Judanne experienced hardship after she retired, and lost her home of 17 years to foreclosure. Not satisfied with being a renter, Judanne worked hard to restore her finances and to prepare herself for homeownership once again. Financial education and counseling were crucial to her ability to do so.
Then there is Kim, who took homebuyer education classes and prepared herself financially so that she was able to buy her first home in her childhood neighborhood.
It is stories like these that remind me that homebuyers want to know the steps they must take to become successful. Everybody wants to do better and they are best guided by people they feel close to.
These stories also remind me of the importance of all of our partners – those lenders, government agencies, realtors and others in the mortgage industry who understand the importance of ensuring that consumers receive the financial education and counseling they need to be successful.
Together we’ve made a difference, and that is something we all can be thankful for.