Hands Up Ministries
Strengthening Families and Communities One House at a Time.
A documentary by Noah Carpenter, an 11th grader at Glen Allen High School.
A ministry in progress.
NBC 12 honors Cassie and JT Matthew's work with Hands Up Ministries with an Act of Kindness.
In the Summer of 2015, we decided to convert all HUM rental properties to homeownership properties. The current tenant at 5th Ave wasn't interested in homeownership or taking proper care of his home, so he decided to move out. Seven months and $16,000 in rehab later, we discovered a working family who had the dreams, desire, and fortitude to purchase the home.
Many people ask a single question, " Where do we find our families?". Most come from referrals and an application process that is normal. Many of us know a family who needs a second chance, a break, works hard and is willing to try. That is who we are looking for.
We want to know, "How long have you rented? What are your stumbling blocks for homeownership?". Many times it's young age decisions that have "PILED" up. No longer can you manage your mistakes, so you don't. WE want families in homes, but we also want families to take care of their history, so they can live free and clear of their skeletons! And, believe me, we ALL have them.
Everyone must put down one month's rent, then they need to save a 10% deposit for homeownership. For example, if you purchase a home for $50,000, you are going to need to put $5,000 down to start a homeowner contract. If you foreclose, you lose that $5,000. We call that "having skin in the game", something you do not want to lose. Typically, HUM gives that family one year to save. So far, HUM is the micro lender, charging a 1% interest rate to the homeowner. Legally, that is the LEAST amount we can charge. We do not give furniture to every family, if they have what they need, but we make sure the house has a washer & dryer, and All appliances necessary for a great start.
HUM makes sure every possible plumbing and electrical need is addressed, because owning a home can cause some renters to be fearful of what "may" happen in the future. We make sure our families know the importance of saving, because SOMETHING IS going to happen in the years to come. We do not want one broken down car or appliance to set a family spiraling into foreclosure, so saving in a bank is a priority.
Finally, we have begun to work with HOME, a housing non-profit that helps families repair their credit and get a conventional loan, with a grant included if they stay the course. We have three families in the homeownership program. All have been successful thus far. Zero have missed a single payment, and HUM is really proud of our homeowners and their desire to live in properties that they can feel proud they purchased. Homeownership leads to stable neighborhoods and to increased city tax dollars coming in, which in turns changes the city schools for the better. For any child or family, permanency in one home leads to success and stability in many ways.