Texas Homeowners at Risk of Foreclosure Find Support from Non-Profit Organization
Beaumont, Texas — As the cost of housing continues to soar, many Americans find it increasingly challenging to make ends meet. Consequently, some homeowners in Texas are at risk of foreclosure. However, there is hope on the horizon as a non-profit organization based in Southeast Texas steps up to provide them with much-needed relief.
Legacy Community Development, led by Kirkni Richardson, has been inundated with 1,000 applications from families in Southeast Texas seeking assistance through their homeowners assistance program. Richardson explains, “Residents are eligible to receive up to $65,000 in homeowner assistance. So, if you’re behind on your mortgage, property taxes, homeowners insurance, or utilities, we can help.”
To qualify for the program, applicants must have an annual income at or below 100 percent of the area median income, which amounts to approximately $120,000 for most counties in Southeast Texas. This statewide initiative has a total of $842 million allocated across eight counties, including Jefferson County, Orange County, and Hardin County.
The available support stems from a collaboration between the state’s homeowners assistance program and Legacy Community Development, resulting in a significant lifeline for struggling homeowners.
For many participants, this program could not have come at a better time. Richardson emphasizes, “You don’t have to pay this back, which is amazing. So a lot of people think, ‘Oh, well, do I have to pay this back? Is it a loan?’ No, this is a grant. This is for you.”
Meredith Brush, a mortgage broker, echoes the sentiments of many by highlighting the worsening situation of high mortgages. Brush states, “Every week, I’m receiving multiple calls from past clients or even current homeowners. We had rates in the threes for many years, and now, the rates are in the sixes for a lot of homeowners.”
Brush emphasizes that mortgage payments comprise four components: principal interest, taxes, insurance, and potentially private mortgage insurance. However, it is the fluctuating taxes and insurance costs that can lead to exorbitant monthly mortgage payments.
To combat this, Brush encourages homeowners in Southeast Texas to monitor their insurance renewals annually and explore avenues to reduce costs. “They can adjust the dwelling coverage. They can adjust the deductible,” she suggests. “There’s a lot they can do to bring their payments back down, then resubmit the insurance policy to their lender and avoid deficiencies.”
For those still struggling to make ends meet, state assistance remains a viable option. Richardson assures homeowners in Southeast Texas that Legacy is here to help, emphasizing, “If you need assistance, we are here to help.”
Richardson estimates that the application process typically takes one to two months, depending on the extent of assistance required by each homeowner.