Homeownership offers a valuable pathway for families to achieve stability, build equity, and establish assets for the long term. Homeownership also benefits whole communities due to the civic and social investments residents make in their neighborhoods over time.
We help Houstonians build wealth by providing knowledge, tools and guidance so that they can make the best decisions for themselves in buying and keeping a home.
So far in 2016, our Homeownership Center has educated 318 people and counseled 183 people – 74 of our customers have purchased homes. In addition, 17 families have been able to retain their homes through foreclosure prevention counseling.
Gustavo Garcia has been saving up for a home for many years. Recently, he read an article about Avenue and the work the organization is doing throughout Houston. Gustavo immediately called the Homeownership Center and schedule a meeting with the team. Gustavo is described as a “model citizen and has perfect credit history” by his supervisor; however, his modest income made purchasing a home challenging. Fortunately, he qualifies for Avenue’s subordinate loan program, and is now preparing to purchase a home at Avenue Place. “If I applied for a loan the traditional way, I would not have been approved. Avenue CDC is helping make my dreams come true.”
Adeline Gonzales is working to move her family into Avenue Terrace, one of Avenue’s mixed-income apartment developments, while they save money for their long term goal of buying a home at Avenue Place. “I took an 8 hour class with Avenue CDC and it may have been the best thing I have ever done in my life,” states Adeline. “The team really prepares you for what you can expect when buying a home. They do not fill you with false hope. They help you make your dreams a reality by giving guidance and realistic timelines.” The homebuyers’ classes are designed to give future homebuyers behind the scenes information and preparation for the home buying process. As Adeline explains, it is hard to find quality affordable housing in Houston that has access to public transit and is in close proximity to the hustle and bustle of downtown. “I see people walking there [Avenue Place] with their families, taking their children to the park and it feels like home,” explains Adeline. “This is where I need to be.”
Foreclosure Prevention Counselor: Diane Jasso
Homeowners who experience financial setbacks often need help to keep their homes. Our Foreclosure Prevention Counselor, Diane Jasso, provides guidance to those who are in danger of losing their homes due to mortgage delinquency or default.
Diane Jasso is a native Houstonian and fourth generation Texan. She attended and received degrees from Houston Community College and University of Houston-Downtown. In 2007, she served a one year term with Americorp as a Housing Counselor and received certifications from the national organization Neighborworks America in Homeownership Education and Foreclosure Prevention. In October of 2008, at the beginning of the economic collapse, Diane began working with Avenue CDC as Foreclosure Prevention Counselor and has worked directly with homeowners to save their homes from foreclosure. Diane Jasso Testimonial
NeighborWorks Week: June 6th-10th
Avenue was proud to be a part of NeighborWorks Week 2016! June 4th – 11th we joined our fellow NeighborWorks America affiliates across the country in showcasing the collective impacts we are making in our communities.
On June 9th, we celebrated “Stories from the Northside”, honoring community leaders and volunteers in the Near Northside who have gone above and beyond to create the changes they want to see in their neighborhood. Our successful home program, neighborhood festival, and oral history project were all highlighted.
On June 11th, we announced our expansion into the Northline neighborhood with a Northline Family Day. Mayor Sylvester Turner and other elected officials were on hand to celebrate a major investment being made in the community by the Wells Fargo Regional Foundation.
Together with our community partners, Avenue CDC was excited to embody the theme of NeighborWorks Week “Creating Opportunity” as we expand our efforts northward!