The Body of Christ and Money :: Lending to the Poor
I have been trying to get to this blog for several days because a variety of spiritual issues have been winding through my thoughts. I am trying to decide how they will affect my current life and my life in the near future. I am looking for GOD in my crisis... what is His path for me through these days, what is His purpose in allowing them to happen. Sometimes writing helps me to sort through all those parts of a problem.
Right now, the most urgent issue I am facing is housing. It has again come to the top of the priority list and there still is no visible solution to this problem. For me the battle always seems to be money... too little of it... to little to easily get ahead of the financial problems it causes.
Because I cannot suddenly create the income I need, I am believing GOD will provide a way to access the housing I need, the workspaces and equipment I am searching for, and other necessary items required to continue building Working Together Inc.
You may be the Christian GOD uses to help me.
I don't want to endure another homeless experience, but that seems to be possible. I am really too old and tired and not healthy enough to fight these battles again, but I also realize there are already many others suffering the same plight, and these are the times of persecution. The means may be different, the source may have changed, but the effects and the motives are the same.
So, again, I am looking for the Body of Christ, trying to find even ONE Christian to be the answer to my needs and my prayers. I am looking for GOD in the middle of my distress, my prayers, my hope, and my life.
I am praying for a place I can OWN
so I won't ever have to move
or be homeless again.
Here are some of the things I am looking for in my housing prayer ::
- As I near the end of my earthly life, I am praying for a final place to live, a home and land that I will never have to move from again.
- It needs to be in the Eugene OR area, where Working Together has been existing almost since it was born.
- It needs to be a decent home that won't need a lot of repairs, be big enough for me and my planned work projects, have space for the help I will need, and include land to develop food and other resources.
- I am praying for a place that is on a major bus line so I can travel to town for what I need to survive daily life with, so customers will be able to reach me, and so I can hire employees who ride the bus.
- Because of my financial situation, I need a flexible payment structure, and the first three years of survival and development income included in the loan (approx. $18 to $30K/year). This will allow me to survive as I develop the property for income purposes.
- Having discovered that GOD lends us the tithe if we need it, requiring a 20% fee when it is repaid, I am looking for a similar arrangement over at least 15 years, but will repay this loan as quickly as GOD provides the income for it.
- Using the property for collateral is expected, but the goal is never to move again and to (finally) have the workspaces I have searched for almost all my life. Considering the property a tithe unto GOD is also an option, which would make GOD responsible for paying you through other channels in your life.
The loan I am searching for would look like this...
- plus 20% as interest
- divided over 15 years or more (180 months or more)
- with no payments due the first three years
- and flexible payments for the remainder of the loan
- possibly smaller in the beginning
- and larger at the end
- an early repayment option (including the full 20%)
- maybe a partial balloon payment option
I know it is asking a lot, but this is the prayer I need answered,
now, as soon as possible.
How much do I need? I'm not sure. It will depend on the property.
I would like to share that I have been looking for housing answers for the homeless (and Christians as the End Times get worse) for many years. I have always been a fan of Habitat for Humanity, but then I discovered the $20,000 House at Auburn University's Rural Studio. After that, Tiny Homes appeared on the scene. I have been trying to design my own version of homes that will fit in this loan category. I feel it is possible to help millions of homeless, disabled, and low-income people to own a small home now, changing their lives forever.
Below I would like to describe the financing program I hope to build to achieve this goal. It is based on the Bible concept I shared earlier and puts that concept into real numbers, so you can understand the possibilities.
When I was working on my budgets for tiny/small homes for those on a fixed income, the maximum biblical loan I felt fair was $50K, which included $40K for the house, $8K for the biblical 20% flat fee interest and a $2K loan processing fee to cover expenses in that direction.
Another option I figured out was to take the 30% of the income that would become the monthly housing payment a person could pay and multiply it by 180 months to get a maximum loan amount for that person. In my current financial status, that would be $115 times 180, or $20,700... which would become $20K for math purposes. This loan amount is divided into $15K maximum for the house, $3K for the interest, and $2K for the loan processing fee.
Fifteen thousand dollars doesn't afford much of a house, even in tiny houses. Larger loan options are needed for people at the lower end of the economy, and that is why I went up to the $50K maximum for each loan. This maximum loan amount creates a monthly payment in the $275 range.
Another issue poverty households face is the debt collection process. Debt collections can cause homelessness in the lives of people trying to recover from poverty or a financial crisis. It may be important to limit the final equity in a house to less than the legal amount at the time a loan is created for a house. That limit was $30K the last time I checked. This debt collection process is why so many with unpaid medical bills end up losing their home... they are forced to sell their house by creditors because their equity is more than $30K. Where do you turn when the bank is the collector?
A $30K house would also have a $6K interest fee and a $2K loan processing fee... that would be $38,000 divided by 180 months, or monthly payments just over $200. With a maximum of $50K possible, there might be room to add to the loan to cover insurance for the first few years, or more improvements to the property.
The key to success in this kind of lending program is flexibility... working with people through their problems, helping them to succeed, protecting them from more homelessness, building supports into their lives, and trusting GOD for the process.
I am looking for this kind of loan, but probably at a much larger financial level to cover the land and start-up costs of what I hope to do.
Are you the Christian I am looking for?