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Chenoa Fund™

Chenoa Fund
912 W. Baxter Drive, South Jordan, Utah 84095

What is Chenoa Fund™?

Chenoa Fund™ is a national down payment assistance program provided by CBC Mortgage Agency, a federally chartered governmental entity. The Chenoa Fund™ program is designed to increase access to homeownership for creditworthy families.

At CBC Mortgage Agency, it’s our core belief that everyone in America deserves access to affordable housing and it’s our mission to help make that happen. We provide tools that open the doors to home ownership for individuals who have the income and credit history to afford a home but may lack the ability to accumulate a down payment. CBC Mortgage Agency partners with reputable mortgage lenders on a correspondent basis to provide down payment assistance for qualified homebuyers in the form of second mortgages.

Homeownership isn’t for everyone—but housing is. While we have minimum credit scores and debt-to-income ratio restrictions that may put some borrowers out of the reach of our direct assistance, we believe that we can reduce the competition for rental housing by assisting creditworthy families to overcome barriers, which in turn helps to reduce the cost of renting and increase its availability for those we cannot assist directly.

How does the Chenoa Fund™ program help buyers overcome the barrier of homeownership?

Under the Chenoa Fund™ program, buyers who meet our eligibility criteria may receive a second mortgage to cover their 3.5% minimum down payment requirement when purchasing an FHA-insured home or the 3% minimum down payment required on a conventional loan. We also offer 5% down payment assistance for FHA loans, which may cover the minimum down payment requirement and assists with closing costs. We believe that by helping responsible homebuyers meet that minimum investment required for a mortgage we create healthier communities by improving the balance between homeownership and other housing types.

Why can’t people just save for a down payment and wait to buy?

Most first time buyers manage to purchase a home by saving for a down payment over a period of years, or perhaps by receiving gifts from parents or other family members. But increasing home prices and stagnant or low wages can make this process difficult, and many Americans lack the earning power to reach that home buying mark. As a result, they have no way to break into homeownership and reap its economic benefits for themselves and for their children.

Studies reveal that many would-be buyers have the income and credit history to qualify for a loan but they lack sufficient savings for a down payment. This barrier is often the most significant economic obstacle for families seeking to transition from renting to sustainable homeownership, and the consistent availability of down payment assistance programs can make all the difference for more U.S. families.

Homeownership rates have decreased over the last ten years and this decline was most dramatic among minority households, millennials, and single-parent households. The need for down payment assistance is greater than ever.

We believe in helping people buy now (if they credit qualify) so they can begin building up equity today.

What kind of support do borrowers receive when using Chenoa Fund™?

As a governmental entity, CBC Mortgage Agency is invested in the success of the borrowers utilizing the Chenoa Fund™ program. CBC Mortgage Agency takes great care in not just making sure that borrowers can qualify for a home but that they become successful long-term homeowners. Borrowers needing extra support receive pre-purchase counseling and all borrowers are given outreach and counseling for the first 18 months after the purchase of their new home to help them to successfully navigate the challenges of owning a home, many for the first time.

What difference can homeownership really make to the Chenoa Fund™ borrower?

Homeowners may experience benefits such as:

  • Predictable monthly housing payments. Renters experience an average of 3.5% increase in rent each year. Landlords can raise rent whenever a lease expires. It’s not uncommon for renters to be priced out of rentals. Homebuyers are able to secure a predictable mortgage payment (i.e., principal and interest) for up to 30 years. In addition, the principal payment builds equity.
  •  Savings and Equity. Most homeowners are better able to accumulate savings that will be available when needed, such as family emergencies, saving for a child’s education, and ensuring a secure retirement. When a homebuyer owns a home, chances are the homebuyer’s equity will grow over time. Conversely, families forced to sink a large proportion of their income into annually increasing rents struggle to build savings, a reality that leaves many in a precarious financial situation. Homebuyers should consult their investment advisor to determine whether there may be financial advantages for them.
  • Tax benefits. Even with recent changes in tax laws, interest from a home mortgage is still deductible for the vast majority of new homeowners. Homebuyers should consult their tax professional to determine whether there may be tax benefits for them.
  • Ability to make the home your own. Homeowners are able to make the home uniquely theirs. Paint a wall, change the carpet, add a cabinet, hang a picture where they want. With rentals, it is at the discretion of the landlord of what they can and can’t do.
  • Community connections. Homebuyers are more likely to become invested in the community when they own the home, caring about how taxes are invested in neighborhoods, schools, and organizations. Homebuyers plant roots, make friends, and share experiences cheering for their children’s teams or simply talking with their neighbors about the simple pleasures of the day. This sense of community results in healthier children, lower crime, and improved neighborhoods.

1Attom Data Solutions: Buying More Affordable than Renting in 66 Percent of U.S. Housing Markets

Are there social benefits that come from owning a home?

In 2017 the National Association of Realtors1 released a study entitled, “Social Benefits of Homeownership and Stable Housing.” The findings revealed that:

  • Homeowners are generally in better health than renters.
  • Increases in housing wealth were associated with better health outcomes for homeowners.
  • Low-income people who recently became homeowners reported higher life satisfaction, higher self-esteem, and higher perceived control over their lives. For example, homeowners are more likely to believe that they can do things as well as anyone else and they report higher self-ratings on their physical health even after allowing for age and socioeconomic factors.
    Renters who become homeowners not only experience a significant increase in housing satisfaction but also obtain a higher satisfaction even in the same home in which they previously resided as renters.
  • Social mobility variables, such as the family financial situation and housing tenure during childhood and adulthood, impacted one’s self-rated health.
  • Homeowners have a significant effect on their children’s success. The decision to stay in school by teenage students is higher for those raised by home-owning parents compared to those in renter households.
  • Students from low- and middle-income families are much more likely to enroll in college when their families experienced gains in housing wealth.

1 National Association of Realtors: Social Benefits of Homeownership and Stable Housing, November 17, 2017

What is the state of homeownership in our country today?

Unfortunately, homeownership rates fell precipitously over the last ten years, and the decline was steepest among minority households, young adults, and single-parent households. Overall, the national homeownership rate dropped from a peak of 69% in 2004 to just over 63% in 2016. One key factor was the loss of 9.4 million homes in the foreclosure crisis from 2007 through 2015. Following the crisis, many lenders dramatically tightened access to safe and affordable mortgages, restricting households with moderate credit scores from buying homes. Another key factor influencing lower homeownership rates has been the rise in student debt, which has eroded the home buying power of young people. Minorities are hardest hit, with homeownership rates significantly lower than the majority population, which leads to increased wealth disparity. We aim to reverse these trends by lifting minority communities out of poverty into homeownership.

How is Chenoa Fund™ connected with the Cedar Band of Paiute Indians?

Chenoa Fund™ is a national down payment assistance program operated by CBC Mortgage Agency, which is a subsidiary of the Cedar Band Corporation. The Cedar Band Corporation is federally chartered and wholly owned by the Cedar Band of Paiutes, a constituent band of the Paiute Tribe of Utah.

Does the tribe benefit from these companies?

Definitely. The Cedar Band Corporation is an important source of revenue for the Cedar Band tribal government, allowing it to perform essential governmental functions. Because of the Cedar Band Corporation, the Cedar Band is able to provide a wide range of socioeconomic programs, such as anti-drug education programs in schools, elder care programs, scholarships to help with college tuition, housing and books, support for tribal members’ medical and dental care, grants to help tribal members purchase homes, and job opportunities for tribal members.