Better Community Neighborhoods Inc. is a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) approved Housing Counseling Agency and has been providing housing counseling services in our community for over 50 years. Comprehensive professional counseling services are free and confidential to any individual regardless of race, color, national origin, religion, gender, familial status, disability, age, gender orientation/identity or income level. Counseling services cover a wide spectrum of topics specific to their housing situation.

Pre-Purchase Counseling

Clients are referred to BCNI for pre-purchase counseling by local and regional agencies that require homebuyer education and counseling to qualify for purchase assistance through their “First Time Homebuyers” programs. Pre-purchase counseling guides potential borrowers through the homeownership process. Counseling includes discussion about the advantages and disadvantages of owning a home; budget counseling; costs associated with home buying; housing needs; what to look for in a lender and what the lender looks at in a potential buyer; negotiating the purchase price and how mortgage payments are structured. The goal of pre-purchase counseling is to fully prepare the client for life as a homeowner. It is truly an exciting time for these prospective homebuyers.

First Time Home Buyer Education Counseling

First-time home buyers often face uncertainty about finding the right house, how to budget, establish and maintain good credit, who to speak with and the service they provide. Counselors review all current contracts, documents and forms related to a home purchase and share ways to finance the purchase and discuss the responsibility of home ownership. Clients discover they are well prepared for the home buying process upon completion of one-on-one counseling or upon completion of the Pre-Purchase group sessions held throughout the year in person and online.

Post Purchase Counseling

Home ownership is rewarding however homeowners may face many challenges and responsibilities including the importance of establishing and maintaining a budget and good credit; neighbors and neighborhoods; home improvements and the benefits of community involvement. The focus of Post Purchase Counseling is to identify any potential challenges to homeownership and problem-solve resolutions to insure successful long-term homeownership.

Budget & Credit Counseling

Learning to make sound financial decisions, budgeting and using credit wisely is the foundation of future financial security. It helps consumers avoid scams, bankruptcy, predatory lending and empowers individuals in an increasingly complex financial world. Budget and credit counseling are designed to improve the individual’s “financial fitness”. A detailed review of personal spending habits, personal savings potential, use of credit, monthly cash flow, and the development of long-term financial goals are among the topics covered. Budget and Credit Counseling is an excellent precursor to BNCI’s Home Buyer Education for future homeowners

Foreclosure Prevention/Mortgage Default Counseling

Current homeowners may find themselves in a financial hardship facing foreclosure and the loss of their home. Or they may be referred to our agency when circumstances occur that result in the homeowner falling behind in their mortgage payments. Counselors work with the client to assess the cause of default, determine if the homeowner is in jeopardy of emanate foreclose and discuss ways to bring the mortgage current and any relief options that may be available to the homeowner. Clients may be referred to other community resources for budget and money management counseling. Counselors will determine if the client may be a candidate for other foreclosure avoidance “tools.” Proactive, ongoing counseling is recommended to insure all steps are taken to avoid foreclosure.

Housing Counseling services may be accessed by contacting the office directly by phone and requesting a Housing Counseling Intake Packet or you may select the link below to complete the Intake form and print the entire Intake packet. Upon completion of the Intake form, call the office at the number below to schedule your first appointment with a Housing Counselor.

We will be holding an online Financial Confidence 5 Weeks Series from April 2nd to April 30th. Click here to learn more or sign up.