Welcome to the DHIC Homeownership Center Newsletter


DHIC's Homeownership Center team (L to R): Lou, Tiffany, Maria, Sheila, Saundra and Analia.

DHIC’s Homeownership Center team (L to R): Lou, Tiffany, Sheila, Saundra and Analia.

Thank you for reading our first edition of the DHIC Homeownership Center (HOC) newsletter, your one-stop resource for homebuyer education and financial empowerment.

We intend to use this platform to stay connected with the thousands of individuals, families and friends we’ve been fortunate enough to serve over the past 42 years. We are here to help individuals learn more about the homebuying process and to share empowerment tips to better manage credit, budgets and finances.

On a regular schedule, we’ll bring you tips and advice on how to:

  • Repair and build your credit
  • Get mortgage ready
  • Find a home
  • Choose a lender
  • Access downpayment assistance
  • Maintain your home for years to come
  • Prevent foreclosure

Since 1974, DHIC has served Wake County as a nonprofit that builds communities and offers helpful homebuying educational workshops. Our Homeownership Center is here to help, with friendly counselors that will provide you with honest answers to your questions and help you develop a plan that’s tailored to your individual needs.

Over the past three years, the HOC has graduated more than 1,180 clients from 42 “Bringing Home the Dream” workshops; helped more than 315 workshop graduates purchase a home for the first time, and provided 59 homeowners with foreclosure prevention counseling and/or interventions, assisting 26 to keep their homes, together worth over $3.2 million.

The HOC also serves as the City of Raleigh’s exclusive provider of homebuyer counseling and assists individuals with accessing downpayment assistance programs such as: Raleigh Citywide Homeownership Program, Federal Home Loan Bank Grant; NCHFA Home Advantage Mortgage and Downpayment Assistance; and the NCHFA Community Partners Loan Pool.

We look forward to staying connected and continuing our service and commitment to the community!


Ways DHIC Can Help



Budget & Credit Counseling: We’ll review your credit, income and assets to identify obstacles you may face before becoming a homeowner. If you need to take corrective action, establish a budget, or build a better credit score, our advisors will help you develop and stick to a sensible plan.

Homebuyer Workshops: We require all clients to attend our eight-hour, “Bringing Home the Dream” workshop at some point during the process. This valuable workshop is a prerequisite to qualify for many first-time homebuyer loan products in our area. Workshops are held 15 times a year on Saturdays.

Loan Pre-qualification: When you and your advisor determine that you’re ready for homeownership, we’ll help you identify special financing programs and refer you to preferred lenders that are knowledgeable about the first-time homebuyers’ market.

Downpayment Assistance: We maintain a referral list of preferred realtors who understand the needs of first-time homebuyers. We’ll also let you know about DHIC homes available for sale. Whatever services you prefer, the home buying choice is ultimately up to you.

Post-Purchase Counseling: We encourage continuing a relationship with DHIC once you’ve purchased your home.  Some clients need extra support to stick to their household budgets, while others face unexpected circumstances that affect their ability to pay their mortgage. Whether you’re facing expensive maintenance issues, are considering refinancing, or are worried about foreclosure, we can help you through difficult times.

Foreclosure Prevention: We offer foreclosure prevention counseling to help Triangle homeowners who are at risk of losing their homes find alternatives to foreclosure. These services include:

Make an appointment with an advisor today by calling (919) 832-4345, ext. 6. We care about your success and look forward to helping you.


Coordinates to Home


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“On your journey, never lose your way home.”

Both of Deborah’s daughters are currently juniors on full academic scholarships at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Read their full story here.

We want to hear from you! Once you’ve bought your new home, please stay in touch. We’d love to hear how you’re enjoying your home and how we were able to help you along the way. Your story may encourage others who are in the process of purchasing their first home. Email us with your thoughts.


Get To Know Analia Wehe-Lehmann




Analia joined the HOC team in August as a homeownership advisor, responsible for helping Hispanic/Latino clients with financial literacy and homeowner preparedness. She’s also responsible for helping clients learn budget management skills.

“I love the ability to help families realize their dream of financial stability and homeownership,” said Analia. “It gives families a sense of pride and accomplishment.”

Analia said Hispanic/Latino families sometimes face financial and budgeting challenges while in the process of purchasing their first home. She helps them overcome hurdles as a language liaison between lenders and inspectors.

“We can thoroughly explain the process so families understand in terms that are familiar to them,” she said.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the Hispanic homeownership rate averaged 45.6 o percent in 2015, two-tenths of a percent higher than in 2014. In the 12 months ending this past December, the increase was dramatic, surging from 44.5 percent to 46.7 percent – the largest one-year spike in more than a decade.

Prior to joining the HOC team, Analia served as a store manager with Target where she was responsible for managing 300 team members. She also had a long career as a lender with SunTrust Bank. She stays active in the community as a board member for Artsplosure.

Analia earned her bachelor’s degree in business and master’s degree in finance from Florida International University. She and the HOC team enjoy doing their part to increase homeownership in our community. Reach her directly at (919) 600-5368 or via email.


Top Fall Home Maintenance Musts




Fall is a great time for home maintenance. The weather’s cooler with gorgeous, golden rays of sunshine before winter’s chill kicks in. Take advantage of the beautiful days to plan ahead and winterize your home with these helpful tips.

Richard Gower, a licensed home inspector and owner of RMG Home Inspections Inc. in Knightdale, N.C., said fall maintenance is a continuation of upkeep homeowners should do year-round. Gower has worked in the industry for 59 years and a DHIC partner for more than a decade.

“I do home inspections because I enjoy it,” he said. “I love meeting people, being around buildings, and seeing the type of work that is being done now.”

Gower’s homeowner tips for the fall season include:

  • Disconnect your hoses. Leaving hoses attached can cause water to back up in the faucets and in the plumbing pipes just inside your exterior walls. If freezing temps hit, that water could freeze, expand, and crack the faucet or pipes. Make this an early fall priority so a sudden cold snap doesn’t sneak up and cause damage.
  • Clean the gutters. Clogged rain gutters can cause ice dams, which can lead to expensive repairs. Once leaves have fallen, clean your gutters to remove them, plus twigs and accumulated gunk. Make sure gutters aren’t sagging and trapping water; tighten gutter hangers and downspout brackets. Replace any worn or damaged gutters and downspouts.
  • Check for cracks. Walk around your home’s exterior to inspect for cracks in the joints, especially if you have a wood exterior.
  • Close foundation vents. Make sure your vents are closed to prevent leaky pipes and check/replace your cold air return filters.

For year-round maintenance advice, visit this helpful NeighborWorks site.


Homebuyer Workshops Offered On Saturdays




Our 8-hour homeownership workshop is available to you at any stage of your purchasing process. DHIC counselors can provide guidance as to when it might be best for you to participate. Attending the workshop is a required step of our counseling process and is also required by several providers of first-time homebuyer loans and downpayment assistance products. Learn more about our workshops.


Homebuyer Education Offered Online


ehome-america-logo-DHIC-web250pxChanging work schedules and child care challenges may sometimes make it difficult for you to take our course at the DHIC Homeownership Center. To help you, we’ve partnered with eHome America to offer a fee-based, online certification course.

While we believe in-person education is the best choice for this homeownership process, this online course helps you get the education and certification you need‚ at your convenience. The Certificate of Homebuyer Education is an essential document that shows lenders you understand how the purchasing process works. You also learn about budgeting and credit and debt management.

Cost for the online course is $99 and takes eight to 10 hours. Though, you may stop and start at any time. Short quizzes will verify your understanding of key information. You will need to pass a test at the end to receive a certificate of completion, which is often required for down-payment assistance and is valid for two years. Register for the online course today.

Please note that you will be required to contact DHIC as a follow-up before receiving your certificate of completion. To schedule an appointment, please contact Tiffany Wilkins at 919-832-4345 Ext.3019.


Grant Supports DHIC Mission


first-tennessee-logoWe’re pleased to recognize First Tennessee Bank for their grant support of our Homeownership Center to help with client counseling and educational services. Read more about this announcement.

We’re proud to welcome First Tennessee among our key supporters in the community, a collection of outstanding organizations committed to affordable housing for families in our community.