Homeport Homebuyer Education Classes Hit The Road

Faith-Based Locations Chosen For Fifth Third Bank Sponsored Series

Homeport’s popular Homebuyer Education courses will have a home and away schedule this summer.

In addition to classes at Homeport’s new headquarters, 3443 Agler Road, Homeport counselors beginning in June will provide homebuyer courses at Central Ohio churches in a series that is being underwritten by Fifth Third Bank.

The first series of “away” classes at a faith-based location will be held June 20 and June 27, 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., at First Church of God, 3480 Refugee Road, Columbus.

Individuals, for free, will have the opportunity to learn important topics related to homebuying such as budgeting and credit, loan products, home inspection and the closing process.

“It’s the same class we teach here (at Agler Road), but we are taking it out in to the community,” said Netta Whitman, Assistant Director of Homeport’s Housing Advisory Services and a certified personal finance counselor.

Bishop Timothy J. Clarke of First Church of God said he was all too happy to host Homeport in educating church members and others interested in purchasing a home.

“The dream and desire of homeownership is part and parcel of the American dream and idea,” Clarke said. “The sad reality is that what was once the promise of this nation, to all of its citizens, has become, for far too many, a nightmare.”

Homeport and First Church have had a substantial relationship over the years. Homeport’s Elim Estates has 48 houses built in 2009 on land purchased from the Church. Homeport’s Elim Manor, with 98 senior apartments, was built on land purchased from the Church in 2011.

Three other locations for the Homeport-run, Fifth Third Bank-sponsored homebuyer education series are expected to be finalized soon. Details will be posted at www.homeportohio.org. Advertising will also be used in communicating the locations, dates and times.

Maude Hill, Homeport’s Vice President of Community and Government Relations, said collaborations and partnerships with faith-based organizations makes sense for Homeport.

 “That is where many of the potential home buyers are. And pastors have great leadership and influence in emphasizing the importance of homeownership,” Hill said.

Fifth Third Senior Vice President Stefanie Steward-Young agreed.

“Fifth Third Bank is proud to partner with Homeport to bring homebuyer education directly to residents where they live and worship,” Steward-Young said.

“Fifth Third has pioneered a number of educational outreach programs that help consumers gain access to the tools they need to be financially successful. This initiative is one example of Fifth Third Bank’s commitment to serve our local communities and to help families achieve their financial goals,” she said.

For Bishop Clarke, the series can’t start soon enough.

“Our friends at Homeport have worked across the years to help make the dream of homeownership come true. We are glad and proud to be partners with them,” he said.

To learn more about the summer series sponsored by Fifth Third Bank, or classes taught at Agler Road, call 614 221-8889, extension 134, or visit www.homeportohio.org/register.