New Haven HomeOwnership Center
333 Sherman Ave
New Haven CT 06511
Contact Information
Address 333 Sherman Ave
New Haven, CT 06511-
Telephone (203) 777-6925 x
Fax 203-773-9272
Web and Social Media
The Sullins Family purchased their home with the help of the HOC

The New Haven HomeOwnership Center increases homeownership opportunities for individuals and families as a leading provider of pre- and post-purchase homebuyer education, financial coaching, and homeownership preservation services throughout Connecticut.
At A Glance
Year of Incorporation 2001
Organization's type of tax exempt status Public Supported Charity
Organization received a competitive grant from the community foundation in the past five years Yes
CEO/Executive Director Dr. James A. Paley
Board Chair Christopher Prokop
Board Chair Company Affiliation Neighborhood Resident
Financial Summary
Revenue vs Expenses Bar Graph - All Years
Mission The New Haven HomeOwnership Center increases homeownership opportunities for individuals and families as a leading provider of pre- and post-purchase homebuyer education, financial coaching, and homeownership preservation services throughout Connecticut.

The New Haven HomeOwnership Center (HOC) has been an industry leader in providing pre- and post-purchase homebuyer education, financial coaching, and foreclosure prevention services statewide since its incorporation as a distinct subsidiary agency of Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven in 2001. Since the economic recession in 2008, we have helped more than 4,000 clients repair their credit, create sustainable household budgets, and become informed homebuyers.

HOC is the homebuyer program of choice in New Haven for first-time homebuyers because of our unique approach: at HOC, our housing specialists are with our customers every step of the way, for as long as they need to feel comfortable purchasing a home. Because of our non-profit status, our motive is to create prepared, confident, and responsible first-time homebuyers who are well-informed about what it takes to purchase and maintain- a home without falling into financial ruin down the road.

Our housing specialists put the needs of each client first-and-foremost, and they are specially trained to understand the variety of mortgage products available to people with low- and moderate-incomes. HOC helps our clients become ready for the financial and practical obligations of homeownership, increasing the stability of their households and ensuring that they will be able to remain in their homes for many years to come.


During 2017, The HomeOwnership Center: 
  • Provided first-time homebuyer education to more than 300 people who successfully purchased a home
  • Helped find solutions for 121 homeowners facing foreclosure 
  • Offered financial education and/or counseling to 1158 clients
2018 Goals: 
  • Assist 200 new homebuyers through our pre-purchase homebuyer education classes
  • Increase client base through our Fundamentals for First-Time Homebuyers Webinar Series
  • Connect 100+ clients with downpayment assistance grants and loans


1. Raise an additional $200,000 in 2018 in program support so that the HOC can enhance its programming to meet the demands of our clients.

2. Raise an additional $100,000 for the HOC’s Rescue Fund, which offers assistance to distressed homeowners who need funds to help them qualify for sustainable modifications. (Zero interest deferred loans to be repaid at refinance or sale of property; with no required monthly payment since these are deferred loans.)

3. Expand our pre-purchase educational courses to reach more first-time homebuyers throughout Connecticut with a particular focus on the Hispanic population.

4. Increase attendance at our post-purchase financial fitness and budgeting workshops and home maintenance classes so that our homeowners will be more skilled at managing their finances and adept at undertaking many of their own small rehab projects without hiring a contractor.

5. Expand our energy conservation classes. 

CEO Statement

The New Haven HomeOwnership Center, in association with Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven, is in the unique position in New Haven of addressing several aspects of neighborhood revitalization and community stabilization simultaneously. We promote homeownership through our first-time homebuyer education and one-on-one counseling. Our goal is for all of our homebuyers to be especially well-equipped to sustain the ownership of their homes. We strengthen communities by encouraging resident engagement in the areas where we are rehabilitating houses and promoting homeownership.

The HOC and NHS are keenly aware of the financial strain that unanticipated expenses can have on low-income homeowners. We help our homebuyers get attractive fixed-rate mortgages with the best possible terms. Our goal is to make housing costs as predictable as possible. If financial problems should arise, we have financial counselors available to provide assistance.


The unique blend of affordable housing development, comprehensive homebuyer education, financial fitness training, hands-on post-purchase homebuyer education, and community organizing/resident engagement poise our new homebuyers for successful homeownership experiences and greatly improve the quality of life in the neighborhoods in which we are working. Indeed, we are convinced that such a holistic approach to neighborhood revitalization is a literal prerequisite for success. Homeownership alone will not turn around a faltering neighborhood; nor will simply fixing up houses or waiting for the overall housing market to rebound. These factors must be combined with effective resident engagement if the neighborhoods in which we are working are to become safe, stable, and vibrant communities where families want to live and raise their children.

Board Chair Statement

I choose to volunteer my time as Board President because homeownership is still one of the greatest wealth builders in our economy and I believe everyone should have the opportunity to attain this dream. With the assistance of The HomeOwnership Center, this dream can be a reality for people who never thought homeownership was possible. 

We ushered thousands of families at risk of losing their homes through the foreclosure crisis of 2007-2008 and continue to be a wonderful support for those looking to avert foreclosure and save their homes, serving more than 100 families each year. 
The pre-purchase homebuyer education program is stronger than ever--offering education and one-on-one counseling to help first time homebuyers establish a budget, improve their credit, understand the homebuying process, and get approved for a mortgage that fits their situation. We recently expanded the program to reach residents throughout Connecticut with our online training platform eHome America. The Board views this as a great opportunity to increase our earned revenue and leverage more grant funding as a result of our greater impact on homeownership outcomes for low- and moderate-income families.  
As a subsidiary of Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven(NHS), The HomeOwnership Center, has enjoyed the benefits of having strong staff and board leadership since it's inception in 2001. As a relatively new Board President (term beginning January 2017) I hope to sustain the strong leadership and strengthen the capacity of the Board of Directors to offer more support to the organization's fundraising. 
Service Categories
Primary Organization Category Housing, Shelter / Housing Support
Areas Served
State wide
East Haven
Lower Naugatuck Valley
New Haven
North Branford
North Haven
West Haven
The HomeOwnership Center provides services for homebuyers and homeowners from throughout the State of Connecticut. As the premier provider of pre- and post-purchase homebuyer counseling and educational services, we attract customers from a wide geographic base.

The HomeOwnership Center offers counseling and education services for first-time and repeat homebuyers and current homeowners facing foreclosure. Our counseling is customized to serve clients wherever they are in their process. Our education curriculum covers everything from financial planning to improving credit to closing on your first home. Classes are available in-person and online. Specific class offerings are: 

  • Pre-Purchase Homebuyer Education
  • Landlord Class
  • Pre-Closing Education
  • Downpayment Assistance
  • Money Management Boot Camp
  • Home Maintenance 

HOC serves clients from across the state with the majority of customers coming to us from New Haven, Hamden, and other surrounding towns in the Greater New Haven Region. 62% of our first time homebuying clients and 87% of our foreclosure clients qualify as low- or moderate-income. 

Population Served Adults / Minorities / Families
Program is linked to organization’s mission and strategy Yes
Program is frequently assessed based on predetermined program goals Yes
Short Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe near term achievement(s) or improvement(s) that will result from this program. This may represent immediate outcomes occurring as a result of the end of a session or service.

In the coming year, the HOC expects to serve 425 people through our 3- and 8-hour homebuyer education classes, 500 people through eHome America, and 100 people through our foreclosure intervention services, each of which heavily incorporate financial literacy as a core tool. 

Long Term SuccessHelpOrganizations describe the ultimate change(s) that will result from this program. This may be far into the future and represent an ideal state. Our goal is to scale our program to reach beyond the Greater New Haven area to reach more state-wide participants. This will be done by strengthening our partnerships with lenders, real estate agents, insurance brokers, and any other professionals who are involved in the homebuying process. 
Program Success Monitored ByHelpOrganizations describe the tools used to measure or track program impact. The Housing Specialists at HOC track client success through CounselorMax, the industry's premier client management tool. This tool interfaces with Salesforce and our client facing software, Compass, where clients can track their progress anytime of day.
Examples of Program SuccessHelpOrganization's site specific examples of changes in clients' behaviors or testimonies of client's changes to demonstrate program success.

Against all odds, Virginia Daniel became a homeowner. Virginia dropped out of high school in ninth grade and had her first child at fifteen. At age nineteen—as a teen mom with no high school diploma—she wanted more. Virginia took the GED, failing six times before she finally passed. She enrolled in community college, becoming her mother’s only child to pursue higher education.

Virginia never believed homeownership was possible, barely making ends meet with one full-time and four part-time jobs. It took her years of hard work, but NHS’ free, first-time homebuyer program made Virginia’s dream a reality. In May 2017, she purchased a formerly dilapidated home that was beautifully renovated by the NHS team. It was only with the support of generous funders and donors that we were able to help Virginia create a budget, learn about the homebuying process, and access downpayment assistance. 

Program Comments
CEO Comments
CEO/Executive Director
Dr. James A. Paley
Term Start Oct 1979

James Paley has been executive director of Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven for the past 35 years and executive director of the New Haven HomeOwnership Center since its inception in March 2001. Since earning his doctorate from Cornell University in 1980 (where his dissertation focused on residential mobility patterns in New York City), he has presided over a program that has grown from a small housing rehabilitation organization to a sophisticated housing development corporation that concentrates on neighborhood stabilization, affordable housing production, and homebuyer education programs. His professional expertise focuses on innovative financing packages; neighborhood revitalization strategies; homeownership education, counseling, and training; and project management. From 1996 until 2008, he served on the Community Advisory Board for JPMorgan Chase, and he currently serves as the Vice Chair of Community Housing Capital Board of Directors.

Number of Full Time Staff 6
Number of Part Time Staff 1
Number of Volunteers 1
Staff Retention Rate 63%
Staff Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 1
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 1
Hispanic/Latino 4
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 1 0
Staff Demographics - Gender
Male 0
Female 6
Unspecified 0
Senior Staff
Title Managing Director

Ms. Russell currently manages program development for client services and staff training for the New Haven HomeOwnership Center, a subsidiary of Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven. She directs the implementation of the pre- and post-purchase curriculum, financial literacy and budgeting classes, homeowner counseling, and Full Cycle Lendingsm products. A graduate of the College of William and Mary with a degree in Political Science, Ms. Russell has also completed Homebuyer Education and Financial Fitness certification programs through NeighborWorks® America. 


With more than twenty years’ experience in financial management training and residential real estate, Ms. Russell has partnered with banks, nonprofits, and faith-based organizations to develop and present homebuyer and financial literacy programs in Atlanta, Orlando, Baltimore, Oakland, Little Rock, San Antonio, and much of Connecticut.

Formal Evaluations
CEO Formal Evaluation Yes
CEO/Executive Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually
Non Management Formal Evaluation Yes
Non Management Formal Evaluation Frequency Annually


The HOC works in conjunction with other nonprofit community agencies, banks, faith-based organizations and other stakeholders in an effort to inform, educate and assist first-time homebuyers and distressed homeowners. 

The HOC works with the City of New Haven, Housing Development Fund, and various banks to obtain downpayment assistance for our homebuyers to ensure that their total costs are affordable. We work with Capital for Change for referrals of prospective homebuyers. The HOC remains a key partner with the Livable City Initiative in New Haven.

Good Egg Award - Bridgette RussellCommunity Loan Fund of Greater New Haven2010
Housing for EveryoneTD Bank2009
WorkPlace Program Partner of the Year Award - Bridgette RussellWorkplace, Inc: Southwestern Connecticut Regional Workforce2011
Green NeighborWorks® OrganizationNeighborWorks® America2014
Good Egg Award for James Paley, NHS Executive DirectorGreater New Haven Community Loan Fund2014
CEO Comments

Board Chair
Christopher Prokop
Company Affiliation Neighborhood Resident
Term Jan 2017 to Oct 2018
Board of Directors
Sandra Hadland Neighborhood Resident
Donna Hall City of New Haven
Carol Heller Bank of America
Charles Lemert Neighborhood Resident
Sarah McQueen Knights of Columbus
Kevin Moran Webster Bank
Jeffrey Moreno Livable City Initiative, New Haven
James Paley Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven
Chris Prokop Yale New Haven Health
Leslie Radcliffe Neighborhood Resident
Virginia Stevenson Neighborhood Resident
Celeste Suggs Neighborhood Resident
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 5
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 7
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 1 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 5
Female 8
Board Co-Chair
Celeste Suggs
Company Affiliation Neighborhood Resident
Term Oct 2016 to Oct 2018
Standing Committees
Development / Fund Development / Fund Raising / Grant Writing / Major Gifts
Community Outreach / Community Relations
Fiscal Year Start Jan 01 2018
Fiscal Year End Dec 31 2018
Projected Revenue $910,600.00
Projected Expenses $910,600.00
Spending Policy N/A
Credit Line Yes
Reserve Fund Yes
Audit Documents
IRS Letter of Exemption
Letter of Determination
Other Documents
Other Documents 3
2015 Annual Report2015View
2014 Annual Report2014View
2013 Annual Report2013View
Annual Report2011View
Annual Report2010View
Detailed Financials
Prior Three Years Assets and Liabilities Chart
Fiscal Year201620152014
Total Assets$2,297,341$2,336,348$2,219,963
Current Assets$817,629$1,009,940$638,886
Long-Term Liabilities$63,313$102,481$93,939
Current Liabilities$70,037$68,966$41,415
Total Net Assets$2,163,991$2,164,901$2,084,609
Prior Three Years Top Three Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201620152014
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountFirst Niagara $10,000First Niagara $20,000First Niagara $10,000
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountTD Charitable Foundation $5,000TD Charitable Foundation $5,000TD Charitable Foundation $5,000
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountCity of New Haven $9,926City of New Haven $5,000 --
Capitial Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
CEO Comments

The greatest challenge faced by the New Haven HomeOwnership Center is one of sustainability. Many of the low- and moderate-income clients with whom we work lack the means to pay the cost of delivering the services that they are receiving from our organization. Our foreclosure intervention clients are at risk of losing their homes in foreclosure. They certainly do not have the funds to compensate our organization for the services we are providing to them. And our first-time homebuyers are typically low- and moderate-income families. We need to develop new sources of revenue so that we can continue to provide the wide range of services that we offer to our clients.


Affordability of housing remains a pressing issue throughout Connecticut. 38% of Connecticut’s households spend more than 30% of their income on housing costs, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The strain of these costs poses a considerable risk to homeowners and homebuyers alike. Fortunately, the New Haven HomeOwnership Center’s services can help them. As staunch advocates for our clients, we are committed to helping existing homeowners and first-time homebuyers in the Greater New Haven area in any way that we can, evolving our services so that we can meet their needs.


We are working hard to make our organization more sustainable, with activities that generate a greater portion of the revenue needed to support our operations. Still, we rely on the generosity of individuals and businesses that support our operations. In the case of banks and insurance companies, our work should be seen as complementary to their financial success: stabilizing communities encourages lending activity and reduces losses due to fire and theft. Local businesses have a vested interest in the stability and vibrancy of our residential neighborhoods. Our organization is a partnership that benefits the entire Greater New Haven community and relies on a broad spectrum of supporters to sustain its existence.

Foundation Staff Comments This profile, including the financial summaries prepared and submitted by the organization based on its own independent and/or internal audit processes and regulatory submissions, has been read by the Foundation. Some financial information from the organization’s IRS Form 990, audited financial statements or other financial documents approved has been inputted by Foundation staff. The Foundation has not audited the organization’s financial statements or tax filings, and makes no representations or warranties thereon. A more complete picture of the organization’s finances can be obtained by viewing the attached 990s and audited financials. To see if the organization has received a competitive grant from The Community Foundation in the last five years, please go to the General Information Tab of the profile.
Address 333 Sherman Ave
New Haven, CT 06511
Primary Phone 203 777-6925
Contact Email
CEO/Executive Director Dr. James A. Paley
Board Chair Christopher Prokop
Board Chair Company Affiliation Neighborhood Resident


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