When U.S. Bank foreclosed on Candejah’s house, she decided she wasn’t leaving. She’d lost her job in the recession and her already predatory loan became impossible. That was three and a half years ago.
Candejah was one of the early members of Springfield No One Leaves, which is the most effective and inspiring grassroots anti-foreclosure and affordable housing group I know of. They run on a shoestring budget and have managed to keep a few hundred people in their homes for years. Bit by bit the banks are throwing in the towel and offering to sell the homes back after foreclosure for what they’re actually worth. Sometimes less.
Of course, there are a few problems.
- With a foreclosure on the credit report, conventional lenders won’t offer even a very small loan to solve the problem.
- After years in limbo, a lot of houses need some serious repair immediately, which is a massive up-front cost. While there are usually funds availabile to help low-income homeowners with this sort of big-ticket item. Except the recorded foreclosure screws up the title and nobody can lend.
- Poverty is geographically concentrated. Even where communities pull together to help out their members, their’s just not much money to go around.
So Candejah’s asking her friends, family, neighbors, and internet friends for help coming up with $20,000 to buy back her home and get the roof fixed for her family. This is literally all it would take to provide an entire three-generation family in stable housing.
Between everything Candejah’s been through and everybody Candejah has inspired, a friend of Candejah’s is a friend of mine. If that sort of thing works in reverse, please support Candejah as you are able or share her story.
Think of it like the 21st century version of a barn raising where a community comes together, everybody chips in a bit, and something important gets done.
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