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United Way Opens Foreclosure Resource Hotline

A collaboration of nonprofit organizations, government, and financial institutions are working to reduce Montgomery County 's high foreclosure rate by helping families at risk before it is too late. Marc R. Levy, President of the United Way of the Greater Dayton Area, and Dan Foley, Montgomery County Clerk of Courts announced a hotline and related services at a news conference today. The hotline operated by United Way 's HelpLink can be accessed by dialing 2-1-1- from a landline or 225-3000 from a cell phone.


Participating organizations in the collaboration include United Way 's HelpLink 2-1-1, the Montgomery County Clerk of Courts, Lutheran Social Services/Consumer Credit Counseling, and the Miami Valley Fair Housing Community Reinvestment Institute Alumni Association.


“Too many families are losing their homes due to foreclosure,” said Levy. “Many homeowners at risk do not know what resources are available or where to turn for help. If they seek help earlier, we believe many foreclosures could be prevented.”


Levy said the focus of this collaboration is particularly timely, given both the current need demonstrated by the high rate of foreclosures locally and the anticipation of continued economic shifts resulting in job loss or income reduction. Predatory lending and health-related financial problems also contribute to this problem.


Levy advises homeowners facing economic uncertainty or loss of income as well as those currently experiencing financial hardship to call HelpLink 2-1-1. “Do not wait until you are in the courts,” he said. “The earlier one reaches out, the more options exist.”


“ Montgomery County leads the state and Ohio leads the nation in home foreclosures,” Foley said. According to Foley, 3,997 cases were filed in the Montgomery County Clerk of Courts office in 2004. So far this year 3,861 filings have been made. These numbers comprise approximately 45% of all the cases filed by the Montgomery County Clerk of Courts.

In 2004 HelpLink 2-1-1 received 207 requests for mortgage, foreclosure assistance and mortgage counseling. So far in 2005, 319 requests have been received.


The following is a summary of some of the services available.


HelpLink 2-1-1 will have skilled, trained staff available 24 hours a day to handle calls received on the foreclosure hotline. Staff will assess each call and make referrals to the appropriate agencies.


Lutheran Social Services/Consumer Credit Counseling Service can provide mortgage assistance and debt management counseling.


Community Reinvestment Institute Alumni Association can provide assistance for victims of predatory lending practices. Also provides training that enables a buyer to be able to identify a predatory loan before they become a victim of a deceptive lender.

Miami Valley Fair Housing provides assistance in reviewing mortgage loans for foreclosure defenses.

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