Archive for the ‘Housing Information’ Category

Detroit CDCs fight the mortgage crisis

A recent Model D article highlights the important and always evolving work of community development corporations in Detroit-including Creekside! Find out how your neighborhood is fighting the mortgage crisis and what you can do to contribute to the effort.

Weatherization Services for Low-Income Detroiters

The City of Detroit is offering weatherization services for low-income Detroit residents to help reduce energy costs in their homes. Services may include window repairs, attic and wall insulation, pipe insulation, caulking, and weather-stripping. These preventative repairs are helpful to reduce home energy costs year round!

To find out if you are eligible for these services according to the Federal poverty guidelines, please call the hotline number (313) 852-5625.

You can also contact Lynn Miller at the Butzel Family Center for questions: (313) 852-4786. Applications must be filled out in person at this center, which is located at 7737 Kercheval, Detroit, 48214.

Be sure to bring the following information with you when going to fill out your application:

  • Proof of ownership or residency
  • Proof of income of all household members
  • Current gas/electric bills
  • Picture I.D. and Social Security Card

If you have any questions about the application process or would like to learn more about weatherization, please visit the City of Detroit website here. You can also contact Sam Butler at (313) 822-0062 or sbutler@creeksidedetroit.org for weatherization or other housing-related questions.

Obama’s Homeowner Assistance Program: Making Home Affordable

The Obama Administration’s Making Home Affordable program estimates it will offer assitance to 7-9 million homeowners by supporting low mortgage rates and refinancing options with lenders. Details of the $75-billion program were released yesterday. The government has created the website FinancialStability.gov to help homeowners access important information and determine if they qualify for the program. An article today in the Detroit Free Press raises skepticism towards the effectiveness of this program in Michigan, where housevalues have severly dropped and foreclosures have continued to grow over the past several years. However, this plan has the potential to help millions of homeowners around the country. Mortgage service providers are expecting to receive large numbers of callers inquiring on their eligibility to modify loans.

Visit FinancialStability.gov to access the most up-to-date information about Obama’s Making Home Affordable program.

Community Feedback for a Creekside Housing Study

For my Urban Planning Masters Project, I am working with Creekside to develop a housing strategy for Creekside’s work in the Jefferson-Chalmers community. For this project, I am looking for community members to get involved and share their thoughts on Creekside’s future housing strategies. Since over 50% of the housing in the community is rental housing, I am especially interested in programs and policies for rental housing in the community.

This semester, I am working with Creekside to research other community organizations, interview renters and landlords in this community, and meet with community members to hear their ideas.


How can community members get involved?

1) Participate in an interview- Creekside is conducting interviews with renters and landlords in this community.

2) Attend a focus group- There will be a focus group in late March where residents can share feedback on the housing strategy. Anyone is welcome to be part of this focus group.

I will continue to post updates on the Creekside blog, but please e-mail me at rbwells@umich.edu with any questions or if you are interested in being part of an interview or focus group.

The Homeowner Affordability and Stability Plan

President Obama unveiled the “Homeowner Affordability and Stability Plan” today in Arizona. This plan is designed to assist homeowners suffering the most from the economic crisis. Read today’s post, Help for Homeowners, on the White House Blog for questions and answers relating to this plan.

Complete eligibility for this plan will be announced in detail on March 4th. 

Payment Assistance Programs

Temperatures Drop and Energy Costs Rise

Could you or someone you know benefit from a payment assistance program for high energy costs this winter? DTE Energy, the State of Michigan, and other agencies are offering the following programs: 

Case Management: Low-income DTE Energy customers can receive assistance to create personal payment plans

Shut off Protection Plan (SPP): Available to all residential customers

Credit Counseling: DTE Energy works with GreenPath, a non-profit consumer credit counseling service, to help with money management

Winter Protection Plan (WPP): Protects seniors and low-income customers from service shut-off due to non-payment between November 1 and March 31

Home Heating Credit (HHC) E-Filing: Eligible customers may receive funds from the State of Michigan Treasury Department

The Heat and Warmth Fund (THAW): Available to customers who meet household income guidelines, are facing shut-off, and have exhausted all state and federal programs

State Emergency Relief Program (SER): Available year-round to low-income households that have a shut-off notice

Low-Income Weatherization: Available to some low-income households and includes caulking, weather stripping and insulation

All information was taken from the DTE Energy brochure. For contact information and to see if you qualify for any of these assistance programs, please download the brochure: Payment Assistance Programs

_______________

Energy Efficiency Tips

Stay warm and lower your heating bills by:

  • Having your furnace inspected annually
  • Lowering the thermostat a few degrees when no one is home or when everyone is sleeping-Each degree you lower can save you 1-3% of your heating costs
  • Weatherizing your home to stop air leaks
  • Replacing furnace filters on a regular basis
  • Replacing incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent light bulbs
  • Lowering your water heater temperature to 120 degrees
  • Washing and rinsing clothes in cold or warm water instead of hot

Interested in more energy-saving tips for your home? Join Creekside and WARM Training Center next Thursday evening, February 5, at the Creekside office (1021 Manistique) from 6:00-8:30pm for our last workshop of the season. The topic will be: Green Building & Healthy Homes. Hope to see you there!