May 21, 2020

The First Steps taken towards home ownership

A pilot program aiming to provide community housing tenants with a supported pathway of education and mentoring to assist  them move towards home ownership has made steady progress since it commenced in September last year.

Known as first STEPS, the program recently celebrated the first pairing of a tenant participant with a volunteer mentor who will now work together to determine what topics around home ownership they would like to focus on in coming months.

Beyond Bank have funded first STEPS with their staff among the presenters and mentors, while United Way WA is a major partner who have facilitated the design and delivery of the program.  Foundation Housing invited its tenants to firstly be involved in the program’s design to ensure it fitted their needs, and then to come along to a series of seminars covering the topics they identified as wanting to learn more about. The second seminar was scheduled to be held just as COVID-19 restrictions came into effect.  Some of the subjects tenants wanted to gain more knowledge of included mortgage contracts, scheduled construction payments in new builds and understanding the full cost of home ownership when expenses such as council rates and insurance where taken into account.

While COVID-19 restrictions continue to pause further group seminars, all parties are committed to resuming them as soon as possible and for more mentor and participant partnerships to be formed, even if initial meetings can’t be face to face.

The first volunteer mentor is a female Beyond Bank employee and will work with a Foundation Housing tenant in her forties who would like to purchase her own home.

If you have any further questions about first STEPS please contact Allan Wilkerson allan@foundationhousing.org.au