Let's Make Home Happen

May 2018, Volume 6 Issue 11

From the Deputy Assistant Secretary

Greetings,

When you hear the word ‘foundation,’ what do you think about? For me, I associate this word with strength, support, and security – and, of course, with homes.

We all know that the strength of a home lies in its foundation. But when there are cracks in the foundation, it’s only a matter of time before things start to fall apart. The same principle applies in our industry, where the housing counselors are the foundation of housing counseling agencies.

If there are gaps in the knowledge and skills of housing counselors, housing counseling agencies won’t be able to provide consumers with effective support for seeking, financing, maintaining, renting, or owning a home. For this reason, the Office of Housing Counseling is working diligently to maintain a strong foundation for HUD’s housing counseling agencies.

In this issue of The Bridge, we highlight a range of tips and resources that can help housing counselors, and thus housing counseling agencies, better conduct their work. In particular, the Office of Housing Counseling and our partners are engaged in efforts to:

  • Collaborate with housing counseling agencies, consumers, and the mortgage and real estate industries to inform, adapt, and improve housing counseling across the homeownership process; 
  • Connect housing counselors to training and professional development opportunities that will improve the delivery of housing counseling services;
  • Promote HUD Exchange, a resource to share housing counseling knowledge and information in support of HUD’s Housing Counseling Program;
  • Improve HUD Housing Counseling Program technology to standardize and streamline housing counseling processes and activities; and
  • Equip housing counselors with the tools needed to prepare for the HUD Housing Counselor Certification Exam.

Technology is another important element of housing counseling foundation. This issue of The Bridge features several stories about this important topic. If your agency uses Home Counselor Online™ (HCO), you won’t want to miss the story on the future of HCO on page 12. Also, HUD’s knowledge management project might inspire you to organize all of the data that you have accumulated over the years.

Through these focus areas, we hope to strengthen the ability of housing counselors and housing counseling agencies to help clients efficiently and effectively. By supporting activities that solidify the foundation of housing counseling agencies, we remain committed to assisting current and prospective homeowners and renters in their quest for safe and affordable housing.

Sarah

secretary

Sarah Gerecke

Deputy Assistant Secretary Office of Housing Counseling