At Mercy Housing & Human Development we hear this question almost every day. One of our main goals is to help low-income families become first time homeowners. We believe that people have a basic right to safe, affordable shelter, and that homeownership empowers communities and the families who live there. We believe sustainability is the key.
Currently, these are the programs we offer; though we are always evolving as the needs of our community continue to change.
Provides education and tools to low-wealth families to enable them to obtain a mortgage loan to purchase their first homes. Not only are they given the opportunity to own a home, they are taught how to keep it. We also provide credit counseling, money management, and loss mitigation counseling. Foreclosure prevention is currently one of our highest priorities and we are proud of our 99.8% non-foreclosure rate with families who have participated in our programs.
Having a solid credit score is crucial when securing loans or credit cards or buying a new home, car, or other large purchases. Credit scores can also affect your insurance rates, ability to rent apartments or vehicles, purchase cell phones, and more. Considering that one in 5 individuals have errors on their credit report, credit counseling could benefit everyone.
From loss of employment to divorce, hardships of any kind can be difficult to deal with alone. When it comes to staying current on your mortgage, it might feel impossible while you're going through a major life event. Our HUD-Certified Housing Counselors can assist homeowners with assessing their individual circumstances, creating a prioritized budget, and discussing retention options with their servicer.
Since 2009, MHHD has partnered with the IRS and the South MS Coalition to bring free tax preparation services to the community. IRS-trained volunteers provide this service to qualified clients across the MS Gulf Coast.
In 2015 alone Mercy Housing's contribution included 448 accepted tax returns and $850,018 in refunds. Since our program's inception, MHHD has helped to keep over Three Million Dollars in the pockets of the tax payers and in our community. Every year, we have seen the number of clients increase, thus enabling MHHD to make more of a positive financial impact with each tax season.
MHHD offers a 2-part Estate Planning Workshop and Will Preparation Legal Clinic 3 times a year. Nobody wants to think about estate planning. It can be confusing and Expensive, but you and your family deserve peace of mind. Will your family be taken care of if something should happen to you? Through a partnership with Mississippi Legal Services, local attorneys will offer estate planning and will draw up your Last Will & Testament completely free of charge.
Community Health Advocacy
A program designed to improve the health indices of the Vietnamese American commercial fishing community through health screenings, doctor visits and ACA Navigation with the assistance of an interpreter. Our community health worker's main focus is helping the Vietnamese community navigate the insurance and medical system as a translator and liaison between doctors and Vietnamese patients.