NMP - November 2019 - 52

special focus on A SALUTE TO THE HEROES OF HOMEOWNERSHIP a special focus on A

honoring our veterans

NOVEMBER 2019 n National Mortgage Professional Magazine n

NationalMortgageProfessional.com

52

homes were irretrievably lost, many
more were saved. The Consumer
Financial Protection Bureau's Office
of Servicemembers Affairs reports:
l It has handled more than
74,000 complaints from the
military community since it
began in 2011;
l It has taken enforcement
actions resulting in more than
$130 million in relief to affected
servicemembers.
Checks and balances are now in
place to stop this once overlooked,
but so critically important,
safeguard. The U.S. Department of
Veterans Affairs (VA) has stepped
up to refund VA loan funding fees
that were erroneously collected
from veterans who, because of
disability ratings, should not have
been charged the fee at all.
Permanent Change of Station
orders can now be considered a
hardship, making all the difference
when there's a property to sell that
might even be underwater.
Fast-forward a few years to
hundreds and thousands of trained
professionals who are covering their
communities with information that's
critical to their own military
connections, saving them unfold
money and grief. What starts as a
job in a niche market soon evolves
into friendships and networks with
family, friends and neighbors in not
just active duty military, but also
National Guard and Reserve units.
I've heard more than one story of
lives being saved simply by working
with these military folks, taking that
extra step to reach out with extra
help or recognizing when to share
the Veterans Crisis Line number.
So here we are, nine years later,
charting some tremendous
progress. With National Mortgage
Professional Magazine, we have
counted more than 15,000 Certified
Military Home Specialists trained
thus far. Some of them have gone
on to train as well. Although 15,000
certified folks is a large number,
there is so much more to do. It
would be great to have a saturated
market at this time, but we do not.
Every person who made the
personal commitment to learn and
understand the tools necessary to
serve this market took it to the next
level, implementing ideas and
events in their own communities to
engage those who need them.
Thus, the number of loans done
through the Veterans Administration
increases each year. Other

continued from page 50

"What started as groups of housing professionals who showed up with
wide-eyed trepidation to give it their best shot, always ended with
smiling lenders, real estate agents and housing counselors who knew
they had the skills to confidently put our nation's heroes into homes and
budgets they could afford."

important and critical information
increases in scope as well.
Working together in communities
across the nation has helped to
heighten awareness of the needs of
our servicemembers and their
families. Together, we have
accomplished so much in just under
10 years, but much more remains to
be done. Most servicemembers,
veterans, retirees, National Guard and
Reserve members are still unclear on
their benefits through SCRA, VA
loans, new healthcare and caregiver
options, and much more.
The Department of Veterans
Affairs knows that caregivers are
critical to helping our wounded
warriors retain their independence
and stay in their homes for as long
as possible, and so has designated
the entire month of November as
"National Family Caregivers Month."
This both recognizes the physical,
psychological and financial
responsibilities of the commitment,
and increases awareness of the
resources available to these
individuals. These sources are
enormously important to the 5.5
million family members, friends and

neighbors caring for veterans
suffering from a variety of chronic
difficulties.
CMHS grads in Los Angeles and
Ohio have opened group homes for
homeless veterans and they help
spread the word about the HUDVASH (HUD-VA Supportive
Housing) rental assistance voucher
program that provides housing for
our most vulnerable homeless
veterans. As of the end of
September 2015, HUD had
allocated more than 78,000
vouchers to help house veterans
across the country.
The military suicide rate
continues to escalate, up from an
average of 22 each day, now
estimated to be closer to 35-40
each day, including active duty
servicemembers and high-ranking
officers. Boots Across America has
added a Service Dog program to
join our efforts toward alleviating
that crisis. We are learning from

some of the best and are placing
our second service dog.
Our President writes that:
"America's military men and women
and their families are vital to the
security and prosperity of our nation.
We have a responsibility to protect
and serve those who have made
countless sacrifices for love of
country." He has signed a
proclamation making the entire
month of November National
Veterans and Military Families Month,
as was also effective in 2018.
The Air Force's civilian volunteer
auxiliary program, Civil Air Patrol,
founded in 1941, is a volunteer
organization with an aviationminded membership that includes
people from all backgrounds,
lifestyles and occupations. It
performs three congressionally
assigned key missions: Emergency
Services, which includes search and
rescue and disaster relief
operations; Aerospace Education for
youth and the general public; and
Cadet Programs for teenage youth.
The age to join is 12, and there is no
upper age limit. Yes, I've already
joined and got my combat boots
and uniform! I'm excited to give
back to my country at this time in
ways I didn't realize were possible,
and you can too.
The Coast Guard established their
volunteer auxiliary in 1939, and it
mirrors many of the same missions
as the active duty Coast Guard.
The Marine Corps just
established their Cyber Auxiliary in
April 2019. The Cyber Auxiliary is a
volunteer organization that aims to
be "a small cadre of highly-talented
cyber experts who train, educate,
advise and mentor Marines."
Never stop striving, never stop
looking for new ways to help our
nation's military. Never
underestimate the impact you have
already made on every
servicemember you have ever
helped. Factor in their family
members and let it be clear: You
make a difference!
For more details on "Family
Caregivers Month," contact your
local VA Caregiver Support
Coordinator, access VA Caregiver
Support resources, or call the
Caregiver Support Line at (855) 2603274 from 8:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m. Call
the Veterans Crisis Line at (800)
273-8255 and Press 1, send a text
message to 838255, or chat online
at VeteransCrisisLine.net.

Beverly Ray Frase is national director of Certified Military
Home Specialists for Boots Across America. She may be
reached by phone at (502) 475-5544 or e-mail
BeverlyFrase@gmail.com.


http://www.NationalMortgageProfessional.com http://www.VeteransCrisisLine.net

NMP - November 2019

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