FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 14, 2007
CONTACT: Joni Byun (310) 914-5000 or
Patti Boerger, Freddie Mac, 703-903-2445
KOREAN AMERICAN ORGANIZATIONS HELP CONSUMERS AND POTENTIAL HOMEBUYERS WITH FREDDIE MAC CREDITSMART® ASIAN GUIDEBOOKS
Los Angeles – Korean Churches for Community Development (KCCD) and National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC) are helping local individuals learn about homeownership by utilizing Freddie Mac’s CreditSmart? Asian guidebooks. The new guidebooks feature information on credit and homeownership, and are designed specifically for the Asian American community.
While the Asian American community is the nation’s second-fastest growing minority population, the homeownership rate among them nationally is only 60 percent, trailing non-minorities by approximately 15 percent.
CreditSmart Asian is a multilingual series designed to provide valuable information to consumers about building and maintaining good credit, understanding steps to buying a home and protecting their investment. The guidebooks address common barriers to homeownership among Asian Americans including language, lack of knowledge of the homebuying process, unverifiable income and lack of credit.
“Freddie Mac believes that the most effective way to prepare for homeownership is to become informed, empowered and educated about the importance of using credit wisely,” said Christina Diaz-Malone, director of Freddie Mac. “By working with KCCD and NAKASEC, we are providing consumers with quality information about credit, the steps to buying a home, and the responsibilities and benefits of homeownership. We are proud to be working with both of these organizations to bring CreditSmart Asian to Los Angeles.”
CreditSmart Asian features three modules:
• The Importance of Good Credit—With this first guidebook, consumers learn the significance of establishing and maintaining a good credit history. Because many Asian Americans avoid debt by paying cash for all purchases, they think that no credit is good credit. This book underscores the importance of establishing a positive credit history to obtain better interest rates and loan options.
• Steps to Homeownership—The second book in the series guides the consumer through the steps involved in the homebuying process. Topics include how to select a real estate professional, seeking out a lender, how to determine a budget, finding the best type of mortgage loan, how to make an offer, and what to expect at settlement. If the consumer is already credit savvy, he or she may opt to start with this book.
• Homeowner Benefits and Responsibilities—The final book provides tips on how to maintain and protect the home once homeownership is achieved, stressing the importance of this large financial investment. The guidebook provides invaluable tips on responsibilities of being a homeowner, such as property maintenance and repair, taxes and insurance needs, managing money as a homeowner and avoiding foreclosure.
The guidebooks are available through Asian American community organizations across the nation including Asian Americans for Equality (AAFE), Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA), Boat People SOS, Korean Churches for Community Development (KCCD), National Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community Development (National CAPACD), National Congress of Vietnamese Americans, National Asian Pacific Center on Aging (NAPCA), and National Korean American Service & Education Consortium, Inc. (NAKASEC).
For a complete set of the CreditSmart Asian guidebooks visit http://www.freddiemac.com/creditsmart/creditsmart_asian.html, or call KCCD at (213) 984-4243 or NAKASEC at (323 ) 937-3703 x 204.
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Freddie Mac is a stockholder-owned corporation established by Congress in 1970 to support homeownership and rental housing. Freddie Mac purchases single-family and multifamily residential mortgages and mortgage-related securities, which it finances primarily by issuing mortgage-related securities and debt instruments in the capital markets. Over the years, Freddie Mac has made home possible more than 50 million times, ensuring financing for one in six homebuyers and more than four million renters. For additional information about Freddie Mac, visit: www.FreddieMac.com.