The Affordable Housing Corporation of Lake County received the statewide 2017 Housing Counseling Agency of the Year Award at the Illinois Governor's Conference on Affordable Housing.
The award was presented by the Illinois Housing Development Authority.
"AHC provides an extraordinary service and is deeply committed to empowering Illinois households. Their work strengthens communities across Lake County, and they are a valued partner," IHDA Executive Director Audra Hamernik said.
AHC is a nonprofit organization that provides pre-purchase housing counseling, down payment assistance, home repairs, affordable homes, rental assistance and foreclosure prevention services.
"The evidence shows that housing counseling works," AHC Executive Director Rob Anthony said. "Homebuyers who complete HUD-approved housing counseling have a 30 percent lower likelihood of experiencing foreclosure and are 283 percent more likely to receive a loan modification if they ever do find themselves in trouble."
Over half of Lake County residents that participated in the organization's foreclosure prevention program last year were able to reach a resolution to keep their home.
"That means over half were able to avoid the devastating impacts that foreclosures have on families and communities," Anthony said.
AHC also provided pre-purchase counseling and education to more than 250 households to prepare them for successful homeownership so that they will never need the foreclosure prevention program.
In addition, the organization stabilized neighborhoods by acquiring, rehabilitating and reselling 31 vacant, blighted properties in 2016.
"Stable housing is the linchpin for strong communities and for households to achieve success in school, health, employment, financial security and quality of life," said Bill Powers, president of AHC's board of directors.
Anthony indicated that the organization was "extremely honored" to receive the statewide recognition, and he praised staff for their commitment to always going the extra mile.
More information about AHC programs is available at www.ahclc.org.
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