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Consolidated Credit’s Homebuying Fair Makes Homeownership Possible – Even in Today’s Market

Written by:
Director of Education and Corporate Communications

After a brief hiatus during the pandemic, the annual homebuying fairs are back.

Buying a home is confusing in the best of times. Now, it’s flat-out intimidating.

That bothers Sandra Tobon, Consolidated Credit’s director of housing counseling and community outreach.

Typically, Consolidated Credit hosts only one homebuying fair a year. But to make up for lost time during the pandemic, the nonprofit has hosted two over the last couple of months.

At the fair, Tobon brings out realtors, mortgage lenders, and other market professionals that can help guide people through the homebuying process right then and there. Organizing the event isn’t the hardest part, though.

Getting Americans who want to buy a home through the door is.

Housing experts see the writing on the wall: Buying a home is so intimidating that many have put aside their dreams of homeownership. It doesn’t have to be that way.

‘Buying a house is a very complex process,” says Tobon. “Talk to a housing professional first. Don’t do the process on your own.”

Getting help is especially important in today’s market.

Many adults have given up on homeownership altogether because of rising costs. Some financial professionals worry that America could even become “a nation of renters.”

“Affording a home is going to be very difficult,” Tobon says. “I feel bad. We’re trying to help our people. We’re trying to help our low-income families.”

Post-COVID catch up

Consolidated Credit’s second annual Florida Homebuying Fair was in 2019 and would be the last one for a couple of years. The fairs just returned this summer in July and August.

The pandemic and its aftermath have not been kind to homebuyers. Construction supplies dwindled because of supply chain issues, so building a home became much more expensive.

Some real estate experts, however, say the pandemic didn’t start the problem, it only exacerbated it. New home construction has been low since the 2008 financial crisis.

As the housing market dries up, many Americans have resigned themselves to renting. But homeownership is one of the best ways to build wealth and no one has to give up that dream.

Finding the right resources

Homebuying fairs are an easy way to meet your resources directly.

Representatives from lenders like Paramount Residential Group and TD Bank joined Consolidated Credit in making that happen.

“I think one of the biggest challenges is the down payment,” says Majurial Watkins, TD Bank representative. “We’ve definitely heard that’s been a concern. Some folks don’t completely understand the full, end-to-end mortgage process – so I think it’s scary to homebuyers.”

”That’s why Consolidated Credit wants to make sure you have all the help you need. The Homebuying Fair is full of banks and other organizations that can walk you through the process step-by-step.

“All those banks have programs for clients who want to buy a home. They usually have down payment assistance,” Tobon says. “They also have specific programs like Home Possible or first-time homebuyers’ programs where they give $10,000 or $12,000 to the client.”

What now?

This year’s fair has come and gone – but that doesn’t mean your resources are.

Consolidated Credit has tools for renters, homebuyers, homeowners, and even those who are facing eviction. Consultations are completely free.

Consolidated Credit is already making plans for next year’s homebuying fair. If there are any resources you’re hoping to see there, don’t hesitate to contact Sandra Tobon at [email protected].

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