RICHMOND (KCBS) – An East Bay nonprofit that works on homeless prevention is using unique loan opportunities to get low income families into previously foreclosed homes.

A below market rate loan from Wells Fargo Bank that is worth about a half million dollars is being put to good use by Shelter Inc. in Contra Costa County.

KCBS’ Dave Padilla Reports:

”They want us to go out and purchase foreclosed, bank-owned properties, refurbish them, and then sell them to low- and moderate-income home buyers,” said Shelter Inc. Executive Director Tim O’Keefe.

In order to buy the houses, the nonprofit was given a 2 percent loan, which must be repaid in five years.

”If there is a profit on the sale of these homes we can retain that money and use it to either help fund our operations, lower our operating costs, or put it into new property,” said O’Keefe.

He said that the program returns money back to the community, helps the home buyer, and provides investment opportunities for the nonprofit. O’Keefe estimates that eight to ten homes could be purchased over the course of a year.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

Comments (5)
  1. Tim O'Keefe says:

    You have completely missed the point of the program. Wells Fargo is providing a low interest loan so that SHELTER, Inc., a nonprofit organization, can purchase foreclosed property, fix them up, then sell them to qualified low and moderate income homebuyers. The buyers still have to qualify for the loan with their own bank, like everyone else. They don’t even have to get a loan with Wells Fargo. Banks have significantly tightened up their lending standards and presumably are much more careful about who they are lending to. If their bank won’t loan them money, then they can’t purchase a home. No one is getting a “free ride.”

    This is an example of a bank committing resources to the community that will take foreclosed (and in some cases, blighted) properties off the market and will result in homes being cleaned up and putting qualified homebuyers back into the neighborhood. It’s a win for the bank, a win for the new homeowner, a win for the neighborhood and hopefully a win for SHELTER, Inc.

  2. Liisa says:

    low income does not always mean low life. Dont know what kind of ignorant rock you live under but obviously you are stupid. I work in Law enforcement for the county and I qualified for a BMR unit. In no way shape or form am I low life. If so I would not have passed an extensive background check. There are hard working people that work hard every day but dont get paid enough to afford the expensive living of California. So Kudos to Bmr units

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