In June 2010, 23 reputable nonprofits, lenders and real estate professionals launched Take Root Milwaukee to elevate community awareness and promote the best possible outcomes for individuals and neighborhoods dealing with the impact of foreclosures.
“In the last twelve months, these partners have provided foreclosure prevention counseling or homebuyer education to 6,500 people. That translates into a lot of successful homeowners and a solid property tax base,” said Raymond Schmidt, Executive Director of Select Milwaukee, Inc. “Connecting people to the right resource gives them responsible options when it comes to buying or keeping their home.”
In just one month, the Take Root Milwaukee hotline has received over 470 calls. Other results of the campaign include:
• 28% of the calls were related to home purchase, 23% were related to foreclosure intervention and 18% of the calls were referred to the Mediation program.
• Launch of the Take Root Milwaukee website, which provides information in two main ways “Buy A Home” and “Keep Your Home.”
• Over 45 individual requests for assistance have been received through the Take Root Milwaukee website, all of which were referred to various partner agencies and resources.
• Homebuyer and foreclosure intervention workshops held by our nonprofit counseling agencies have been full since the campaign began.
“This campaign was spurred by the need to highlight those agencies that provide the community with reliable, factual and primarily free homeownership education and foreclosure intervention services, with the intent of combating misinformation and predatory practices,” said Suzanne Dennik, Foreclosure Consultant.
“This effort is dedicated to promoting educational resources and services that endorse sustainable homeownership, making sure consumers are aware of what is involved in purchasing a home.”
Within the first month of the Take Root Milwaukee campaign, participating partners have helped:
• Retired people on a fixed income with rising medical costs who fear they may lose their home;
• Borrowers trying to reach a resolution with their lender while dealing with a circular cycle of paperwork;
• People who have lost their job and have been looking for work for at least a year and no longer have access to unemployment income; or
• Potential homebuyers who are interested in purchasing their first home or a foreclosed property and don’t know where to start.