Wells Fargo Cincinnati NeighborhoodLIFT Program Invests $5.2 Million to Boost Homeownership
CINCINNATI, October 27, 2014 /3BL Media/ – Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC), NeighborWorks America® and The Home Ownership Center of Greater Cincinnati, Inc. will join Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley to announce the Cincinnati Wells Fargo NeighborhoodLIFT®program, an initiative offering $5.2 million from Wells Fargo to boost homeownership and strengthen Cincinnati neighborhoods.
Of the $5.2 million committed by Wells Fargo, $4.2 million will go toward down payment assistance grants and program support to help potential homebuyers overcome the barrier of making a sufficient down payment.
“Making homeownership more affordable and revitalizing our neighborhoods will help make Cincinnati a stronger community,” said Cincinnati Mayor Cranley. “This terrific public-private collaboration will make a tremendous difference for families and neighborhoods through sustainable homeownership.”
Down payment assistance grants of $15,000 will be available for eligible homebuyers with annual incomes that do not exceed 120 percent of the Cincinnati area median income – which is about $82,200 for a family of four – with income maximums varying depending on family size and type of loan. To be eligible, homebuyers must meet criteria including completing an eight-hour homebuyer education session with The Home Ownership Center of Greater Cincinnati or another NeighborWorks America HUD-approved counseling agency.
“Like many communities, Cincinnati neighborhoods were significantly affected by the housing crisis,” said J.R. Huber, area manager with Wells Fargo Home Mortgage. “While mortgages are available at relatively low interest rates, many families are unable to buy a home because they struggle with making the down payment. The NeighborhoodLIFT program can help local mortgage-ready homebuyers realize their dreams of owning a home.”
To receive the full grant amount, participants buying homes with LIFT program down payment assistance grants must commit to live in the home for five years and qualify for a first mortgage on the property. The down payment assistance grants may also be used to buy a home that needs improvements with a new mortgage purchase 203k renovation loan.
In addition to providing down payment assistance for homebuyers, Wells Fargo will donate $500,000 to support stabilization efforts in Cincinnati neighborhoods.
Registration now open for free event on November 21-22
The Cincinnati NeighborhoodLIFT® program will begin with a free homebuyer event on November 21-22 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Duke Energy Convention Center grand ballroom located at 525 Elm St.
Prospective homebuyers can register and learn more about the program at www.neighborhoodlift.com or by calling (866) 858-2151. Pre-registration is strongly recommended for an opportunity to reserve a $15,000 down payment assistance grant, although walk-ins will be welcome while funds are available. The event also includes a Wells Fargo Affordable Home Tour® viewing center where attendees can preview local homes available for sale.
“This innovative collaboration between NeighborWorks America, our network member, The Home Ownership Center of Greater Cincinnati, Inc., and Wells Fargo will put more Cincinnati families and individuals on the path to homeownership,” said Corinne Cahill, senior relationship manager, Midwest Region at NeighborWorks America. “The required housing counseling and education classes, provided by certified professionals, have been shown to help homebuyers achieve successful and sustainable homeownership.”
Cincinnati NeighborhoodLIFT® program down payment assistance grants may also be combined with other down payment assistance programs to provide additional financial benefit to qualified buyers. Information regarding these other programs will be available at the November 21-22 event.
Participating homebuyers can obtain mortgage financing from any qualified lender and The Home Ownership Center of Greater Cincinnati will determine eligibility and administer the down payment assistance grants. Approved homebuyers will have up to 60 days to finalize a contract to purchase a home in Cincinnati to receive a grant.
“The Home Ownership Center is proud to help families qualify for the Wells Fargo NeighborhoodLIFT program down payment assistance grants,” said Rick Williams, president and chief executive officer of The Home Ownership Center of Greater Cincinnati. “This investment will help individuals and families become homeowners, and support our larger community. It’s a smart time for families to invest in homeownership and to be first in line to access the down payment grants, people can register to start working with The Home Ownership Center of Greater Cincinnati.”
Cincinnati is the eighth city in 2014 to receive the NeighborhoodLIFT ® program, and is now one of 30 housing markets across the country that will benefit from a total of $220 million Wells Fargo has committed through its LIFT programs. Since February 2012, LIFT programs have helped create more than 7,850 homeowners in the 29 communities where the programs have been introduced.
About the NeighborhoodLIFT® program
The NeighborhoodLIFT® program is a collaboration between Wells Fargo, the nonprofit NeighborWorks America and local nonprofit organizations. The NeighborhoodLIFT program is designed to provide sustainable homeownership initiatives in cities affected by the housing crisis. A video about the NeighborhoodLIFT program is posted on the Wells Fargo YouTube Channel.
About The Home Ownership Center of Greater Cincinnati, Inc. and NeighborWorks America
The Home Ownership Center of Greater Cincinnati, Inc. is a chartered member of NeighborWorks America, a national organization that creates opportunities for people to live in affordable homes, improve their lives and strengthen their communities. NeighborWorks America supports a network of more than 235 nonprofits, located in every state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Visit www.hometoday.cc or www.neighborworks.org to learn more.
About Wells Fargo (Twitter @WellsFargo)
Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a nationwide, diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.6 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through more than 8,700 locations, 12,500 ATMs, and the internet (wellsfargo.com), and has offices in 36 countries to support customers who conduct business in the global economy. With approximately 265,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 29 on Fortune’s 2014 rankings of America’s largest corporations. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy all our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially. Wells Fargo perspectives are also available at Wells Fargo Blogs and Wells Fargo Stories.