PATCHOGUE, NY – June 1, 2017 – Community Housing Innovations, Inc. (CHI) is celebrating National Homeownership Month by recognizing the benefits of working with homeownership counselors to buy a home or foreclosure prevention counselors to remain in a home. Throughout the month, CHI will share clients’ stories on social media and the CHI website regarding the programs available for current and/or potential homeowners. As National Homeownership Month, June is a time to raise awareness and reflect on the impact of homeownership in the United States. The Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) announced that the theme of National Homeownership Month in 2017 is “Finding Your Place in a New Era of Homeownership.” Homeownership enhances lives and positively impacts community development. As a HUD-approved housing counseling agency, CHI has trained counselors who provide individuals and families with homeownership education and counseling, pre-purchase education including a thorough review of a client’s credit, creation of a personalized affordability analysis, review of mortgage financing programs, and establishment of a home purchasing strategy and budget. Counselors walk clients through the entire home purchase process. In addition, CHI offers down payment/rehabilitation grant assistance, typically in the amount of $25,000, for qualified first-time homebuyers. In Westchester County, foreclosure prevention counselors work with clients who are in danger of losing their homes, working to secure loan modifications or other remedies so they may remain in their homes. People who have completed HUD-approved housing counseling have a 30% lower rate of foreclosure and are 283% more likely to receive loan modifications. According to the Federal Reserve, in 2016 a homeowner’s net worth was approximately 45 times greater than a renter’s, which is up from previous analysis in 2013 indicating a net worth of 36 times greater. Nationwide, the homeownership rate is 63.7% and the average age of the first-time homebuyer is 33. The housing sector accounts for approximately 14% of total U.S. economic activity. In New York, Nassau and Suffolk counties experienced an increase of 10.7% in closed home sales in the first quarter of 2017 and Westchester County experienced an increase of 5% in closed home sales for that same period. Statewide, the total number of homes for sale has decreased while the median sales price for homes has increased. About Community Housing Innovations Founded in 1991, Community Housing Innovations, Inc. is a nonprofit affordable housing and social services agency serving Westchester, the Hudson Valley and Long Island. CHI provides housing and human services that support social and economic independence. Programs include emergency and transitional housing, permanent housing, homeownership counseling, education, and down payment assistance, foreclosure prevention education, and development of fair and affordable housing. For more information on CHI, visit www.communityhousing.org.