2008 News
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Mayor, Housing Partners and Lenders Announce New Incentives for
Home Buyers And a Free Housing Info Workshop

October 2008

Mayor Matthew J. Driscoll joined with representatives from local housing organizations and mortgage lenders to highlight a series of new initiatives to help home buyers find a new home in the city. The new initiatives include:

Mayor Driscoll announced the city is making available an additional $100,000 to provide down payment and closing cost assistance to new first-time low- to moderate-income home buyers who complete the Nationally-certified HomeBuyer Education Class offered by Home HeadQuarters.

“There are many new incentives to make it easier for buyers to find their dream home in Syracuse,” said Mayor Driscoll. “The best way for first-time home buyers to start their search is by completing the HomeBuyer Education series and when they do that the city will assist their purchase with down payment and closing cost assistance of up to $3,000.”

Information on those home buyers classes will be one part of The Syracuse Housing Workshop this Saturday, October 4, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Home HeadQuarters, 124 E. Jefferson St. (Enter at both Jefferson and Salina Streets). Representatives from NEHDA, Jubliee, Empire Development, Home HeadQuarters, SMNC, the Spanish Action League, Syracuse Center of Excellence, the Near Westside Initiative and the Greater Syracuse Association of Realtors will be on hand to show interested homebuyers the latest homes for sale as well as information on homebuyer programs and energy assistance. Home HeadQuarters HomeOwnership center staff will also provide homeownership and financial counseling and a HomeOwnership Orientation Workshop. The event is free and open to the public. For more information, call HHQ at 474-1939.

The city and its housing partners also are distributing 110,000 information booklets showcasing newly renovated homes, building lots and detailing new tax incentives now being offered to persons who build new homes on vacant lots or renovate abandoned properties in the city. The new city property tax exemptions provide 10 years of exemptions from both city and school taxes for property owners who either rehabilitate a vacant residence or who build a new 1 or 2 family residence. There are additional years of exemptions also available on new construction if the house is considered LEED-certified, an energy and environmental rating system through the US Green Building Council. Partial tax exemptions for five years on city and school taxes are also available on any home improvement valued at $10,000 or more.

The Mayor was joined today by representatives from the housing non-profits, including NEHDA, Jubliee Homes, SMNC and Empire Development; Kerry Quaglia, Executive Director of Home HeadQuarters. Also present were representatives from local mortgage lenders including Geddes Federal Savings & Loan, Solvay Bank and Empower Federal Credit Union; and other community representatives

“Despite the economic news nationally, local lenders still have great mortgage products for ready homebuyers,” said Kerry Quaglia, Home HeadQuarters Executive Director. “With still low interest rates, affordable city homes, down payment assistance and now tax exemptions for home improvements; it’s a good home buying market.”

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Madison Street Clean Up and Planting Day
September 13, 2008

Thanks to folks from Congregation Beth Sholom-Chevra Shas and various dedicated neighbors for donating their time and energy in helping Home HeadQuarters clean up the property on Madison Street. The 2-family house is slated for extensive rehab and should be available to a new homeowner in the Spring.

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Home HeadQuarters Promotes Three Staff Members
July 28, 2008

Home HeadQuarters Promotes Three Staff Members Syracuse, NY – Home HeadQuarters, a local not-for-profit housing and community development organization, has promoted three staff members in an organizational realignment supporting the agency’s regional lending and homeownership expansion.

Kim McIlroy was recently appointed Program and Operations Director for Home HeadQuarters. In this newly created position, Ms. McIlroy will be primarily responsible for managing the organization’s regional expansion efforts helping to reach underserved families throughout Upstate and Central New York. Ms. McIlroy will also work to enhance policy and procedures, develop strategic planning goals and provide oversight to all grants management activities. A native of Syracuse, Ms. McIlroy holds a B.A. in International Studies and Spanish from Nazareth College and previously worked for Syracuse University’s College of Law and NeighborWorks Rochester as Associate Director. She is a committee member for the 40 Below Summit.

Sharon Owens as HomeOwnership Center Director will now oversee all day-to-day operations and programming for Home HeadQuarters nationally-certified HomeOwnership Center. Ms. Owens will manage all homeownership, financial and foreclosure intervention counseling staffs and be responsible for program and partnership management including educational curriculum, homeownership outreach, employer assisted housing programs and all post-purchase activities. Before joining Home HeadQuarters, Ms. Owens was the Associate Executive Director for Jubilee Homes. She holds a B.A. in Economics from Syracuse University and currently serves on the boards of the Syracuse Alliance for a New Economy (SANE) and the Spanish Action League.

Karen Schroeder as Marketing and Resource Development Manager will be responsible for strategic marketing, public relations, resource development and donor relations. In this expanded role, Ms. Schroeder will provide marketing support for the organization’s expansion efforts and seek to increase fundraising activities and opportunities. Ms. Schroeder was previously the Community Relations and Development Coordinator. Before joining Home HeadQuarters, Ms. Schroeder served as the Assistant Marketing Director at Carousel Center for the Pyramid Companies. She holds a B.A. in Marketing Communications from Columbia College in Chicago, Illinois, and serves on the board for Child Care Solutions. She is currently a committee member for the Near Westside Initiative, the Eastwood Neighborhood Association (ENA) and University Neighborhood Preservation Association (UNPA).

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NYS Affordable Housing Corporation Approves $300,000 to Renovate 62 Homes in Onondaga County
April 2, 2008

The New York State Affordable Housing Corporation (AHC) board today approved a $300,000 grant to Home HeadQuarters, a private nonprofit organization, to upgrade 62 homes in Onondaga County, including the City of Syracuse.

“I’m very proud that we are able to partner with Home HeadQuarters to renovate existing affordable housing in Onondaga County,” said Priscilla Almodovar, AHC President and Chief Executive Officer. “Improving our housing stock is crucial to maintaining our quality of life in upstate New York.”

“Home HeadQuarters is pleased to work with both the County of Onondaga and the City of Syracuse to renovate owner-occupied homes at risk,” said Kerry Quaglia, Home HeadQuarters Executive Director. “AHC funding is a vital component to addressing the major rehabilitation issues these homeowners face.”

The renovated homes will be located in neighborhoods designated as revitalization and transitional areas. The grant is expected to help finance improvements for 58 single-family and two two-family homes. Renovations will include structural repairs, roof replacements, door and window replacements, hard-wired smoke detectors, electrical, plumbing, furnace and duct work and other code-related improvements, completed in accordance with lead safe work practices. The grants will be limited to households earning no more than $48,800 for a family of four.

The total value of improvements under the program is $750,000. In addition to the grant from AHC, the program will leverage $190,000 in Energy Smart funds provided by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA); $75,000 each in HOME funds and Community Development Block Grant funds provided by the City of Syracuse; and $110,000 provided by Home HeadQuarters FlexFund home improvement lending pool. FlexFund loan dollars are private funds put together by Home HeadQuarters from twelve area banks and credit unions.

AHC, a subsidiary of the NYS Housing Finance Agency, was established in 1985 to promote homeownership by low- and moderate-income households. Financial assistance approved annually by the New York State Legislature, combined with other private and public investment, is used for the construction, acquisition, rehabilitation and improvement of owner-occupied housing.

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Home HeadQuarters partners with St. Lawrence Housing Coucil to offer Home & Energy Improvement Financing in St. Lawrence County
February 2008

The St. Lawrence County Housing Council, Inc., with financing provided by Syracuse housing and community development agency Home HeadQuarters, is now providing low-interest home and energy repair loan and grants to area homeowners.

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Home HeadQuarters chosen to participate in NeighborWorks® America/SONYMA promotion
February 2008

NEW YORK—Tuesday, February 5, 2008—The State of New York Mortgage Agency (SONYMA), which offers low cost mortgages to first-time homebuyers, and NeighborWorks® America, a national nonprofit dedicated to promoting homeownership, have agreed to form a partnership to promote homeownership in underserved neighborhoods in New York State.

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Low-interest Energy & Home Improvement Loans Go Global!
February 2008

Ok, not quite global, but Home HeadQuarters’ FlexFund Home Improvement Loans and NYSERDA Energy Loans and Grants are now available to homeowners throughout Central and Upstate New York!

As more families face rising utility costs in aging homes, the need for flexible, low-interest, no equity required energy and home improvement financing keeps increasing—that’s why we are now offering our loans and grants to Central New York homeowners in Onondaga, Broome, Madison, Cayuga, Cortland and Oswego counties.

Home HeadQuarters, working with local lending partners, put together a loan pool specifically targeting families who have not yet built enough equity in their homes or fall just below bank underwriting standards to borrow from traditional lenders. There are no income eligibility requirements to participate in this program.

Learn more about Energy Improvement Loans at 2.99% (APR* 3.33%)--the lowest interest rate available in the area--Energy Grants of up to $5,000 for eligible homeowners and FlexFund Loans at 6.99% (APR* 7.41%) for any type of home repair or renovation or print out an application by clicking here.

*Annual Percentage Rate

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990 James Street, Suite 100, Syracuse, NY 13203
Phone (315) 474-1939 Fax (315) 474-0637
Email: info@homehq.org