Housing Attorney Chase Haller shares some thoughts on the Housing Department:
The Clinic’s Housing Department could not be more thankful to the generosity of our supporters in 2014. Our Helping Hoosier Homeowners program has continued its work into 2015, assisting our central Indiana neighbors in protecting their homes from foreclosure and working to ensure that our local communities maintain a stable and strong tax base.
To give you a better sense of what that means, let’s take a look at some statistics: In 2014, the Clinic assisted 420 Hoosier families in avoiding foreclosure—representing 64% of the 656 borrowers who came to our office seeking help. Avoiding just one foreclosure saves a local community and stakeholders an estimated $40,000 to $80,000. Using the conservative end of that range, in 2014 the Clinic helped save our central Indiana communities $16,800,000. Moreover, using median home values in Indianapolis, the Clinic helped Hoosier families maintain $67,195,800 in assets. These numbers help us understand our outcomes in the Housing Department, but the incentive behind the work is found in the Word: “My people will live in peaceful dwelling places, in secure homes, in undisturbed places of rest.” — Isaiah 32:18 (NIV)
Numbers aside, I think of all the people that sit in my office and describe their home to me. They talk about raising their children there, the importance of the good schools for their special-needs kids, tending to their rose garden, having fellowship with their neighbors. There is always something unique about the way a person describes what Home means to them, but there is also always a singular constant: peace. A place where you can go to forget about work and focus on your family, to engage in a hobby to stimulate your mind; a place to have guests and to show them how much you care for them. Therefore, the work we attempt to do on behalf of our clients is meant to fulfill the responsibilities to which the Lord calls us: “If you see some brother or sister in need and have the means to do something about it but turn a cold shoulder and do nothing, what happens to God’s love? It disappears. And you made it disappear.” — 1 John 3:17 (The Message)
The Clinic takes this warning seriously. As such, we care deeply about Home. The generosity of our supporters shows that you, too, care deeply. It is written upon our hearts. Our pledge in 2015 is to continue our love for our neighbors in need. We do this not because it always feels good or is simple—it often includes difficult work. We do it because Jesus taught us that if we understand two of the most basic Christian principles—to love your neighbor as yourself and to love your God with all of your heart and all of your strength—we can show others the meaning of living a life in the fullness of Christ, giving back what we have so graciously been given ourselves.