SECU announces lending partnership with Community Home Trust
RALEIGH, NC (September 23, 2015) — Affordable housing is often elusive for many North Carolinians, but land trust properties can be the answer for some potential homeowners. Land trusts can help provide communities with housing for more moderate income populations and maintain sustainable home prices for consumers. To open the door for members interested in land trust properties in the Chapel Hill/Carrboro area, State Employees’ Credit Union (SECU) is pleased to announce a lending partnership with Community Home Trust (CHT) of Orange County.
Community Home Trust is a non-profit organization working to increase affordable home ownership opportunities using the community land trust model where homes are conveyed to owners using a renewable 99-year ground lease. This model keeps homes reasonably priced for subsequent buyers and future generations. Once applicants are qualified for the program through Community Home Trust, financing becomes the next obstacle, as most lenders have ceased offering financing options for land trust properties.
“Housing in Chapel Hill and Carrboro is unaffordable for many of the people who work here,” noted Robert Dowling, Community Home Trust Executive Director. “Community Home Trust strives to provide more affordable housing options for citizens in our area and extend additional support services beyond the purchase phase. It’s critical to have lenders who are willing to serve those looking to secure a Community Home Trust purchase and we are very grateful to have State Employees’ Credit Union join us to assist their members with financing.”
“Many credit union members are striving for the dream of home ownership, but some struggle to find homes within their price range,” said Stacie Walker, SECU’s Senior Vice President of Loan Origination Services. “It’s vitally important for our cooperative to explore all opportunities to help these members achieve their dream, without compromising their financial stability.”
SECU financing not only benefits new CHT purchasers, but also current owners, as was the case with SECU member Marla Barnes. Upon notification that SECU was on board, she reached out to her local branch regarding refinancing. “After discussing the loan with an SECU Financial Services Officer, I found that I could lower my rate and save over $200 per month. I am thrilled!” stated Barnes.
Walker added, “We are happy to partner with Community Home Trust to offer another option to help members with land trust properties, and we envision this partnership as a possible model for future programs in the state.”
A not-for-profit financial cooperative owned by its members, SECU has been providing employees of the state of North Carolina and their families with consumer financial services for nearly 82 years. The Credit Union also offers a diversified line of financial advisory services including retirement and education planning, tax preparation, insurance, trust and estate planning services, and investments through its partners and affiliated entities. SECU serves over 2.4 million members through 266 branch offices, nearly 1,100 ATMs, 24/7 Member Services via phone and a website, www.ncsecu.org.