Contract for deeds and rent-to-own agreements are more often than not lending practices that target the poor. These agreements let buyers believe that they will own the homes they occupy one day, but the reality is far different.
Our mission is to build a group of affected and engaged home buyers, who are trapped in predatory contracts for deed, lease purchase, rent-to-own, and similar land agreements. Various companies, some with Wall Street connections, have developed a business model based on taking advantage of lower income and working families desperate for affordable housing, yet caught in the post-recession and meltdown credit desert. The Home Savers Campaign is made of families and organizations who want to fight predatory practices and increase consumer protections for those who want to buy a home yet are forced into an alternative method of financing outside of guaranteed mortgages, which are now out of reach for many low and moderate income Americans.
For example, in 2016 in Detroit, more than 50% of loans were contract purchases of these types rather than FHA guaranteed mortgage loans. Rent-to-own schemes and contract land purchases are skyrocketing. Companies including the giant equity firm Apollo, the Dallas-based Harbour Portfolio specializing in contract purchases, and South Carolina-based Vision Property Management utilizing rent-to-own agreements along with hundreds of others are bottom fishing in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac auctions of foreclosed and abandoned properties hoping to fast deal these houses to unwitting lower income families. We are building a group of invested Home Savers who will fight for ordinances, policies, and legislation that will give them a real chance to decent and affordable housing.