Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick today [Monday] announced the creation of a home ownership compact with private lenders. The compact’s goal is to provide 10,000 mortgages to first time buyers over the next five years. According to Aaron Gornstein, Undersecretary of the Department of Housing and Community Development, lenders will provide the loans through MassHousing and Massachusetts Housing Partnership, two state programs which have fared much better during the housing and foreclosure crisis than similar private programs. Gornstein says affordable housing is key to keeping young families in the state and a talent pool in local communities.
“Being able to live near family and friends and contribute to the civic life in that community is extremely important. And so we want to attract and retain that workforce that we’re going to need to grow the economy in the future.”
Six banks have initially committed to the compact, though Gornstein says he expects many more to join soon. Meanwhile, $1.3 million in grants is going to 21 home-owner assistance and foreclosure prevention centers across the state to help current and potential home buyers. Barbara Anthony is Undersecretary of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation.
“What the Patrick Administration has been very concerned about since the beginning of this crisis is that people get the kind of counseling that they need in order to help them get a modification of their loan from the lender, or perhaps a short sale, whatever might be in the best interest. And to steer them towards these HUD-approved housing counseling centers and away from any of the scammers who are out there with false promises of rescue.”
Both Anthony and Gornstein are scheduled to be in Springfield Tuesday to announce an effort to renovate abandoned and foreclosed properties.