In an important step for having the voice of the housing counseling community present in important housing policy, the Senate Banking Committee invited housing counseling advocates to testify at a hearing this week on consumer-related issues raised by the housing finance reform debate. Lot Diaz, Vice President of Housing & Community Development for the National Council of La Raza (NCLR), forcefully made the case for the critical role that housing counseling plays in the housing finance system, both by helping to ensure that consumers are prepared for homeownership and by helping distressed homeowners navigate the loss mitigation process.

NHRC is working with NCLR and other housing counseling advocates to incorporate housing counseling into any housing finance reform legislation and to ensure that any new housing finance system that emerges ensures access to mortgage credit for all credit-worthy borrowers, including borrowers of color and low- and moderate-income borrowers. We have had several meetings with key staff from the Senate Banking Committee and House Financial Services Committee in recent weeks and will continue to push for the non-profit housing counseling community and our clients.

You can read the testimony Lot Diaz submitted to the Senate Banking Committee here and a recording of the hearing is available here.