Mission: HomeStart is committed to creating vibrant, healthy communities in Northern Illinois by connecting people and families to beneficial, affordable housing resources and by leading community-based solutions to local challenges.
Results: We have helped over 300 families receive assistance through the Illinois Hardest Hit Fund program since 2011. We provided down payment assistance to over 50 first time homebuyers through our Homebuyer Advantage program. More than 125 potential homeowners attended one of our pre-purchase classes and about 500 current homeowners attended our foreclosure prevention workshops in our most recent annual reporting period.
Target demographics: Current or future homeowners.
Direct beneficiaries per year: 800
Geographic areas served: Northern Illinois (outside of the Chicago area).
HomeStart is the result of a merger between two non-profit organizations located in neighboring cities in northwest Illinois: Neighborhood Housing Services of Freeport, and the Rockford Area Affordable Housing Coalition. After more than a year of exploring what they could do better together than they could do separately, it was determined that the synergistic results would be worth the effort involved in merging, and HomeStart was born January 1, 2013. Both organizations had sound accomplishments in the arenas of affordable housing, foreclosure prevention, and neighborhood improvement, prior to their alliance, but they have much greater potential going forward. The passion, commitment and integrity of all those involved in the formation of HomeStart is very impressive!