Housing Counseling Agency to host homebuyer education classes

Special to the American Press

Calcasieu Parish’s Housing Counseling Agency, in conjunction with Project Build a Future, has announced its free Homebuyer Education Classes schedule for 2024.

All classes are held at the Allen P. August Multipurpose Annex, 2000 Moeling St. in Lake Charles and participants can opt to attend two, four-hour, back-to-back classes or attend one eight-hour session.

The first class begins Feb. 17. Here is the full 2024 class schedule:

  • Saturday, Feb. 17: 9 a.m.- 5 p.m., hosted by the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury
  • Monday, April 22: 5-9 p.m., hosted by Project Build a Future
  • Tuesday, April 23: 5-9 p.m., hosted by Project Build a Future
  • Monday, June 10: 5-9 p.m., hosted by Project Build a Future
  • Tuesday, June 11: 5-9 p.m., hosted by Project Build a Future
  • Saturday, Aug. 17: 9 a.m.-5 p.m., hosted by Calcasieu Parish Police Jury
  • Monday, Oct. 21: 5-9 p.m., hosted by Project Build a Future
  • Tuesday, Oct. 22: 5-9 p.m., hosted by Project Build a Future
  • Saturday, Nov. 16: 9 a.m.-5 p.m., hosted by Calcasieu Parish Police Jury.

The class walks participants through the entire process of buying a home, step by step. It covers all the fundamentals of homeownership, including the pros and cons of purchasing a home, the role of realtors, all about mortgages (mortgage terminology, mortgage originators, mortgage underwriters and underwriting criteria and mortgage attorneys), financial management and proper budgeting. Other topics include down payments, closing costs, insurance and how to apply for grants.

Residents who are interested in buying a home, are in the process of buying a home, and even those who already own homes, are encouraged to sign up for these classes. Please note that the definition of “first-time homebuyer” is anyone who has not owned a home in the past three years — even if the person owned a home previously.

“Education is the key to investing in yourself, your family, and your community — it pays the best interest,” said Maxcine Fontenot with Housing Counseling. “Homebuyer education classes provide participants with the opportunity to develop the skills needed to reach financial goals, increase savings and secure the financial stability needed for homeownership.”

Classes are free to all participants, regardless of income. To register, visit calcasieu.gov/housingcounseling, click on the “homebuyer group counseling” tab and fill out the application.

Applications are also available at the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury’s Human Services Department office, 2001 Moeling St., Lake Charles. The office is open from 8 a.m.- 5 p.m., Monday-Friday.

Participants will receive a certificate when they successfully complete classes.

For more information, call the Calcasieu Parish Housing Counseling Agency at 337-721-4030, ext. 5152 or email mffontenot@calcasieu.gov.

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