December 9, 2021 - Dorchester, MA - Just a little over three years ago, MAHA celebrated its 30,000 graduate from its first-time homebuyer and homeowner education classes. This month, after a period of unprecedented growth combined with a pandemic that forced innovations in the delivery of the classes, MAHA is announcing that it has surpassed the 40,000 graduate mark.
“We know that the desire for homeownership is very much alive in Boston,” said MAHA Executive Director Symone Crawford. “We are thrilled that so many families place their confidence in MAHA’s ability to assist them as they take important steps toward owning a home of their own.”
MAHA first class took place in 1991 at St. Luke’s AME church on Blue Hill Avenue in Dorchester. Since then MAHA has hosted 625 multi-session Homebuying 101 classes with many of them in recent years at the Sheridan-Hagins Homeownership Center and MAHA headquarters at 1803 Dorchester Avenue. Since April 2020, all classes have happened virtually.
In 1996, MAHA initiated its first HomeSafe class for new homeowners which features a property insurance discount plan for graduates. In 2019, MAHA launched Saving Toward Affordable Sustainable Homeownership (STASH), a first-in-the-nation education and matched-savings program for first-generation homebuyers.
MAHA’s team of homeownership advisors include Percy Stallworth, Michelle Crockett, Anthonina Fenelon, Sarah Paulino and Tatiana Galvao. They deliver services in English, Spanish and Haitian Creole. This year alone they have already graduated over 3,600 people with more to come this month. A recent graduated summed up her experience with this quote. “Tatiana made the session very enjoyable and informative. Better than I ever expected.”
“We couldn’t do this without our partners, especially the City of Boston’s Department of Neighborhood Development, Massachusetts Housing Partnership and MassHousing,” said Symone Crawford. “Our lenders, home inspectors, real estate agents, closing attorneys, and insurance agents that have presented in our classes over the years share in this milestone as well.”
“Homeownership is so expensive for too many families,” said Carlos Vargas, owner of Vargas and Vargas Insurance and MAHA Board member. “That is one of the reasons that I support MAHA and have been a part of their classes since 1995. MAHA fights for more affordable homeownership opportunities and makes sure banks and insurance companies are doing their part to make homeownership possible for first-time and first-generation homebuyers.”