Local non-profit provides help for struggling homeowners

SPOKANE, Wash. — If you’re a homeowner struggling to pay your mortgage during this pandemic, a local non-profit is ready to help.

SNAP Spokane received a $50,000 grant from Bank of America to go directly into its housing counseling program that helps hundreds of homeowners in our community.

The COVID-19 pandemic has hit many homeowners hard. Some had to take forbearance on their mortgages to just get by. But when the forbearance period is up, what then?

SNAP Spokane has a free service ready to help you.

“We hope that people will reach out to us so we can help them early, rather than later when they’re really in trouble,” said Jennifer Hentges, housing counseling program director at SNAP Spokane.

SNAP’s housing counseling service can provide mediation, mortgage counseling, legal and community service referrals, and foreclosure prevention loans.

Currently, the SNAP housing counseling program has more than 250 clients. By this fall, they expect that to increase dramatically. With the $50,000 grant, they’ll be able to hire on more help to meet the demand.

“Foreclosures. Nationally, were down pre-pandemic. But they certainly never went down here in Spokane County. Trying to figure out how to get federal or HUD money to serve those clients was always a challenge,” said Karen Campbell, financial stability program coordinator at SNAP Spokane.

SNAP is preparing for hundreds of people to ask for their help, people who perhaps never had to reach out for assistance.

“It happens to everybody. By having this program available, it can meet everyone’s needs. Not just a certain demographic,” Hentges said.

SNAP said hardship and unemployment don’t discriminate.

“Often times, people don’t know what to do. They are just in a situation where they don’t feel like there are any option,” Hentges said.

During times of stress and fear, you may not realize there are options for you. The experts at SNAP are there to help get through each step of the way.

If you’re a homeowner in need of forclosure prevention assistance, you can call SNAP’s housing counseling line at 509-319-3040 or you can visit snapwa.org/sfa

RELATED: Bank of America gifts SNAP $50,000 for housing counseling program