Kelly B.

Kelly is just like any other mom - she wanted to give her kids a place to call home. One where they could go to a good school, have a yard to play in, and be part of a safe, friendly neighborhood. She gave her family just that place. But before she knew it, her home was slipping away from her and was on track to be sold at auction. That was because Kelly was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder. As Kelly struggled with her disease, her obligations as a mother and as a full-time employee, her severe mood fluctuations would make it harder to manage her responsibilities. She eventually struggled to pay her mortgage payment. Kelly started to realize she needed help. She found Columbus Housing Partnership (CHP) on the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) website. “They recommended it, so I felt it was legitimate, because it wasn’t an ad or anything like that,” said Kelly. Even after coming to Columbus Housing Partnership for help, she was unable to commit. She came to the office once, but did not return. She decided to try to work out her payments by herself. She spoke to her lender and they told her she would have to pay an amount up front followed by monthly payments of $1,800 in order to stay in her home. Kelly soon found out she couldn’t make it work. “After I didn’t follow through last year, I thought that maybe there was still hope and CHP is where I could get it. “ Kelly contacted Isabel Giles, a Housing Advisor at CHP’s Homeport Housing Advisory Center, after she found out her house would be going up for a Sherriff’s Sale. Her home was set to sell on July 30th. She called Isabel on the 28th and was told what she would need to do in order to receive a stay of sale. She had the necessary paperwork signed by the judge on the 29th. However, the Sheriff’s office did not receive the paperwork on time, and the lender purchased her home. Kelly and Isabel continued to work together towards reversing the sale. Kelly complied with Isabel’s instructions and created a budget to determine what options were realistic. Isabel also helped Kelly write her hardship letter to her lender, and told her what it should contain. Kelly said that Isabel “provided step-by-step support.” Isabel became Kelly’s advocate, making phone calls daily to her lender and answering all of her “repeated” questions calmly. Kelly said, “Isabel knew what was coming next, and knew what the possible outcomes were.” And as a result, she said, “I got a really good modification, the best they could offer me. And yay, the house is in my name!”