|by Roger Chartier:
In hard times
There are opportunities to stay afloat and have a home of your own or save your home.
There are folks that have immigrated to this country and the whole family worked two jobs and put every spare cent into buying a 3 family house cash. In 5 years, they had an exceptionally nice house with a piece of land for a garden and they didn't owe a cent for a mortgage.
When hard times came they only had insurance and real estate taxes to pay. Easy enough as they rented one apartment to cover the cost of tax and insurance plus a bit more. They didn't even have close to a high school education.
There are some folks who own a rather large home and stubbornly refuse to move or sell until they lose it altogether to the bank. The people who sell their $350,000 home when they lose their job and have equity of $150,000 can still buy a home for the cash that becomes available after the sale.
Again worry about nothing but insurance and tax.
If you can finagle it rent out a room to a student or elderly person or whomever for some extra $$$ to offset some expense.
The point is to decide early on before it's too late. Worse case or maybe not the worse case is to sell and buy a motor home. Excise tax and insurance are the expenses as well as a little gas to move a few miles here and there.
Government Assistance to own
The Housing and Urban Development's Homeowner Voucher Program
is related to the HUD program that gets people out of housing projects and into an affordable rental of their choice.
In this case, the Homeowner Voucher program will help you to buy what they like to call a "modest" home.
The point about "modest" is that they aren't dumping a lot of money into some really nice free real estate for poor people.
Still, this is an opportunity to have your own home, again it will be modest.
Contact the office of the local Public Housing Agency for more information and help in this direction.