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Arizona Receives Funding for Foreclosure Prevention Counseling

The ""Arizona Department of Housing"":http://www.housingaz.com (ADOH) announced last week that it has received $683,060 to support the continuation of the state's foreclosure prevention counseling efforts.
The much-needed boost will enable an existing network of 13 community-based organizations across Arizona to provide continued assistance to homeowners in danger of foreclosure, ADOH said in a press statement. In addition, the state said it would use the funding to train foreclosure counselors and work with communities to reach at-risk homeowners needing information and free counseling services.
The state of Arizona has taken a brutal beating from the housing bubble and subsequent foreclosure crisis. It has consistently ranked among the top five states, leading the country in foreclosure rates. According to ""data released"":http://dsnews.comindex.php/home/news_story/2286 just today by ""RealtyTrac"":http://www.realtytrac.com, Arizona had the third highest foreclosure rate in the month of November, behind Nevada and Florida. According to RealtyTrac's market data, one in every 198 residential properties in Arizona received a foreclosure filing last month.
""Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano"":http://www.governor.state.az.us/ points out that thousands of Arizonans have been impacted by the subprime loan market and a variety of economic challenges, such as rising food and utility prices and job loss. ""This grant money will allow us to expand the options for homeowners in danger of foreclosure, and continue to provide the much-needed counseling.""
Gov. Napolitano noted that an important resource for troubled homeowners is the dedicated Arizona foreclosure helpline, which to date has had more than 9,000 phone calls. This free helpline is available to anyone seeking guidance regarding foreclosure. Trained personnel manning the hotline can refer callers to an Arizona-based counseling agency that can provide the assistance they need.
According to the state's Housing Director Fred Karnas, ""The Arizona Department of Housing is grateful for the additional resources needed to continue our efforts and expand the services for those families hard hit by the mortgage foreclosure crisis.""
The grant to support Arizona's foreclosure intervention efforts was provided by funds from the ""National Foreclosure Mitigation Counseling Program"":http://www.nw.org/nfmc. The initial funding was provided by Congress in the FY08 Consolidated Appropriations Act and additional funding was provided through this Summer's Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008.
The recently announced grant is in addition to the $1.3 million received in March 2008 and will allow the Arizona Department of Housing to extend the needed foreclosure counseling services until December 2009.
The National Foreclosure Mitigation Counseling Program is administered through a competitive application process by ""NeighborWorks America"":http://www.nw.org, within guidelines defined by Congressional legislation. NeighborWorks America is an independent, Congressionally-chartered non-profit organization based in Washington, D.C., with a mission to provide access to sustainable homeownership and safe, affordable rental housing.
The Arizona Department of Housing, a cabinet-level state agency, provides housing and community revitalization to benefit the people of Arizona.

About Author: Carrie Bay

Carrie Bay is a freelance writer for DS News and its sister publication MReport. She served as online editor for DSNews.com from 2008 through 2011. Prior to joining DS News and the Five Star organization, she managed public relations, marketing, and media relations initiatives for several B2B companies in the financial services, technology, and telecommunications industries. She also wrote for retail and nonprofit organizations upon graduating from Texas A&M University with degrees in journalism and English.

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