Independent Bank announces that it is working with Freddie Mac for a second year in an effort to expand outreach and education to potential homeowners. Freddie Mac will be providing an operating grant and educational counseling materials while Independent Bank associates will donate additional support for two counseling initiatives supported by Freddie Mac.
The first initiative is outreach and education using Freddie Mac’s new Get the Facts on Homeownership materials, and is intended to dispel common misconceptions about buying and owning a home. The second initiative, “Get Credit Smart” uses the Freddie Mac CreditSmart comprehensive consumer financial literacy curriculum. CreditSmart was developed by Freddie Mac working with various local and national nonprofit agencies. Freddie Mac’s support comes at a time of great need as nonprofit counseling agencies face challenges from increased demand and shrinking budgets.
Several nonprofit organizations have been selected statewide to receive the grants, materials and counseling support. The organizations that will receive the grants and support include Neighborhoods Inc. of Battle Creek, the Center for Financial Health, with offices in Lansing and East Lansing, Circle of Love CDC in Saginaw, Bay Area Housing in Bay City and Human Development Commission in Caro. Neighborhoods Inc. of Battle Creek is a chartered member of NeighborWorks America.
“Last year’s initiative was a great success for all parties involved, and we want to continue to demonstrate our commitment to the nonprofit organizations and communities we serve,” said Russ Daniel, senior vice president of mortgage lending at Independent Bank. “There is still a great need for this type of education and we are dedicated to ensuring people can get that education.”
In the first five months of 2010, over 300 individuals participated in Independent Bank’s “Get Credit Smart” seminars, and even more attended other related classes. The goal is to reach at least 1,000 people per agency by the end of the year through community outreach. Independent Bank Loan Officers will continue to donate their time to assist with the initiative in order to reach this goal.