Monday, March 8, 2010

NeighborWorks America Recognizes National Consumer Protection Week by Warning Homeowners Against Loan Modification Scams

In conjunction with National Consumer Protection Week (NCPW), March 7-13, NeighborWorks America and its growing coalition of national government agencies, nonprofit organizations and financial institutions are empowering homeowners to combat loan modification scams. The effort is an extension of the organization’s national Loan Modification Scam Alert campaign, designed to help homeowners protect themselves against loan modification scams, find trusted help and report illegal activity to authorities.

NeighborWorks America is an official partner of NCPW, a coordinated consumer education campaign that encourages individuals across the country to take full advantage of their consumer rights.

An estimated 4.5 million Americans are at risk of losing their homes to foreclosure. While many will seek relief in the form of loan modification services, too many will instead become victims of scams.

“Foreclosure rates in America are now at an all-time high and so is the need for help,” said Kenneth D. Wade, chief executive officer of NeighborWorks America. “This National Consumer Protection Week, NeighborWorks is urging community groups and businesses across the nation to join in the effort to educate homeowners about how they can guard against loan modification scams—a fast-spreading epidemic in need of immediate attention.”

Learn more, including the six red flags that indicate you may be dealing with a scammer.

Forty-Nine Community Development Leaders Graduate from NeighborWorks’ Achieving Excellence Program

NeighborWorks America announces the graduation of 49 community development leaders from NeighborWorks America’s prestigious Achieving Excellence in Community Development program offered in association with Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.The graduation of the fourth Achieving Excellence class occurred on March 4, during the NeighborWorks Training Institute in New Orleans.

Achieving Excellence is an 18-month educational program for seasoned executive directors and senior level staff in community organizations that have a focus on affordable housing, community revitalization or community economic development. Through this program, graduates specifically addressed one of the most critical challenges facing their organizations, identified and implemented solutions that not only dramatically changed how the organizations do business, but also fostered lasting community change.

Independent evaluations have shown that in just the first Achieving Excellence two classes alone, graduates have collectively achieved the following:

  • Total clients served increased by 146 percent collectively;
  • More than $12.3 million in new income generated by 23 organizations;
  • Average total assets per organization increased by 23 percent, while the average increase attributed directly to Achieving Excellence was $6,860,507 per organization with $96,047,109 in aggregate;
  • Affordable housing units developed and managed increased 32 percent and
    22 percent, respectively;
  • Approximately 2,500 new affordable rental homes developed, managed or acquired by 18 organizations;
  • 89,100 square feet new commercial space created by 7 organizations.

Learn more in the NeighborWorks newsroom.