FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Press Release – September 7, 2016
NACA CEO CALLS ITT TECH CLOSURE A MAJOR VICTORY IN BATTLE AGAINST PREDATORY STUDENT LENDING
(Boston, MA – September 7, 2016) – Tuesday’s announcement by the nationwide for-profit school ITT Tech that it is immediately closing all of its 130-plus campuses represents a major victory in the fight against predatory student lending, according to Bruce Marks, Founder and CEO of NACA, one of the nation’s largest community advocacy organizations.
In July last year, NACA’s groundbreaking Student Debt Action program took on ITT Tech and its largest shareholder, Putnam Investments, to protest the school’s predatory student lending, outrageously low graduation rates (less than one third) and false promises of job placement. Last week, the U.S. Department of Education announced that federal student loans and grants would no longer be used for enrollment at ITT Tech’s 137 campuses and that the school would need to produce more than $150 million in collateral. Instead, ITT Tech opted to shut down its entire system.
“This is a huge victory in the fight against predatory student lending, dealing with the student debt crisis and starting to turn around what has become a predatory economy in general. One major contributor to the student loan crisis is gone, and this will send a clear signal to other private, for-profit schools that they cannot continue to make empty promises to their students while creating a financial hardship for those students at the same time.”
On July 22, 2215, Mr. Marks personally led a group of protesters from NACA’s Student Debt Action project in a march on the headquarters of Putman Investments, the single largest stockholder in ITT Tech. The group’s objective was to persuade Putnam to divest itself of its interests in ITT Tech and to force the school to stop its predatory private lending practices. He said that Putnam “has the responsibility to make sure that then not just divest but to see to it that ITT changes its predatory practices and that they really provide true academic excellence to their students”.
After having taken $5 Billion in federal money since 2010, ITT Tech’s announcement eliminates a significant player in creating the country’s student debt crisis, now totaling more than $1.3 trillion.
The announcement that debt relief will be available for ITT students who are unable or choose not to transfer credits to another school came as good news to Marks. “ITT’s recruiting methods misled its students about the quality of the education they would receive and about the opportunities that would be waiting for them when they graduated. Less than one third actually graduated, and placement rates were incredibly low. These students deserve to have their federal student loan debt cancelled, and we hope that the Obama Administration will cancel the private student loans for ITT Tech students.”
NACA is the largest HUD certified non-profit home ownership and community advocacy organization. NACA is the most effective organization in modifying mortgages and provides the best mortgage in the country. NACA CEO Bruce Marks was named Bostonian of the Year for 2007 because of his work in getting the major lenders and servicers to modify home loans for borrowers who come through NACA. See Bostonian of the Year. He has also testified before Congress on numerous occasions including September 12, 2000, being one of the only people to sound the alarm of the pending mortgage crisis. For more information go to www.naca.com
UPDATE: All appointments for NACA’s #Tampa office today are cancelled. Weather conditions from Hurricane Hermine are still too treacherous to ask our members to come to the office, so we are cancelling today’s appointments for our members’ safety. All appointments will be rescheduled as soon as possible. #NACAPurchase
MEMBERS PLEASE NOTE: NACA’s offices in #Jacksonville FL and #Charleston SC will be closed today as a result of weather conditions from Hurricane Hermine. Our #Tampa office will open late today as well, hopefully around 11am. All missed appointments will be rescheduled. We apologize for any inconvenience. #NACAPurchase
Members Please Note: NACA’s Jacksonville and Tampa FL offices are closed for the day due to weather conditions from Tropical Storm Hermine. Any appointments scheduled for today will be rescheduled and all calls will be routed to NACA Member Services. We apologize for the inconvenience.
NACA has multiple social media channels through which our members and others can follow NACA activities, see success stories and read news stories relevant to home ownership and related issues such as the student debt crisis.
We enoucrage you to not only follow us on these channels, but actively respond by sharing, re-tweeting, re-pinning and so on so others can learn about NACA and its mission.
Our social media channels are:
Google Plus: http://plus.google.com/+nacacom
If you have any questions regarding NACA’s social media efforts, please contact Media Coordinator Tim Trumble at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We received the following message from a NACA member who recently closed on her home. (By the way, she works for one of the nation’s largest banks.)
Sent: Thursday, June 23, 2016 4:21 PM
To: Frances Epps <email@example.com>
Below is my testimony
It was in the month of July while renewing my lease, an exercise I’d repeated numerous times over the past decade, that I decided it was a time to make change in my life. Like many, the economic turmoil in 2008 caused significant impact to me financially and instilled a sense of mistrust in the practices and policies of financial institutions. My goal was to identify an institution, the right financial institution, who is truly dedicated to their client, providing services as well educating them in all areas of the financial spectrum.
I consider myself a disciplined person who manages finances well while open to learning better money management and expenditure practices. After spending numerous hours looking at different options, I came across NACA. Truthfully, I was initially skeptical. Like many I reviewed “google reviews” versus reviewing the NACA’s mission and vision statements. My friends, family, coworkers were unable to give me the level of understanding about this experience I sought, therefore I signed up for a seminar. It required a two month wait to attend. To support my goal of being diligent in gaining understanding options and programs offered I set a timeline of one year to complete the process
Following the seminar, I was scheduled to meet with Ms. Wilkins in October. During that time, I read the booklet, collected the necessary documents for review and went for my two hour meeting. My counselor, Ms. Wilkins, was very gracious and helpful, entering all the necessary documentation in the system. I was very excited when she advised that I was very close to “A Go” for a review. I had to gather a few documents which took an additional two months for me to gather. She was patient and always smiling whenever we met in person or by phone. She has become my number one person on my speed dial. I made myself available to her at any time because of her willingness to help; she always cleared her schedule whenever I needed her time.
Ms. Wilkins became my friend, my advocate and also the person who questioned me about my activity whenever I used one of my credit cards. Admittedly sometimes it made me very uncomfortable. I am forty years old have lived all over the world and had never been in a position that required me to explain my spending activity. It was an adjustment, however this process and Ms. Wilkins’ partnership helped me to understand financial responsibility and awareness. Now I am more aware of when I pull a credit card from my wallet and use for an emotional purpose; there is a pause and I ask myself similar questions to those Ms. Wilkins would ask. I’ve developed from her collaboration guidance, help and stronger financial awareness. I thank her for guiding me there though an uneasy adjustment for me personally.
December 2015 became my life changing and defining month. Ms. Wilkins phoned me and I answered up immediately. I could hear in her voice the ‘smile’. She is about to tell me what I have dreamt about since July of 2015. I was approved for a loan! Suddenly the obstacles, personal privacy challenges and worry I had to overcome disappeared in the three minutes of our conversation. Her excitement matched my own because together we’d accomplished this life goal together. I cannot begin to explain the emotion encompassed in those three minutes.
As part of my next steps, I attended another workshop and met my future real estate agent, Ms. Thompson. The next person who would usher me through a defining moment in my life, though I had no idea at the time. We set up an informal meeting and unknown to her, I was scouting for a person who would make this process magic and I did not need to scout further. Ms. Thompson is among the most thoughtful, resourceful, talented and knowledgeable persons I have ever known. I gave her the parameters of ‘my’ dream house and being all she is, showed me that my efforts in financial efficiency offered me even more that I thought I deserved. She worked endless hours, often while traveling, always informative about upcoming news. There were late night email exchanges, all so I maintained a pulse on the marker and awareness of any possible deals. Having been a resident of Charlotte only 3 years, the initial house she found… admittedly I had some skepticism. My knowledge of locations were limited to where I lived and worked. She showed me a house and my initial reaction showed on my face I’m sure. I wasn’t overly excited but she knew it was a house I had to see. There were other viewing that day. I came home…so many decisions to make so I did what I knew to do – Google Searches – reviewing the vicinity… picturing myself in the house… reading everything I could find on the internet. I was confused. Sleep was an impossibility. At 7:30 am I received a text from Ms. Thompson, phoned her back and said, let’s make an offer.
From that point on, everything is history. She did all of the leg work, while I opened my checkbook and wrote checks to every possible inspection NACA request. She has worked countless hours on behalf of me to make this transition smooth as possible. In March of 2016, I was asked to come to the office to close on my house – literally dream house. NACA and the staff are among the very best in this business area. They are working incredibly hard for people who have had challenges in the past and who have the commitment and drive to overcome them.
I feel their hard work should be rewarded for the following reasons:
- They teach clients how to change poor finance management
- They encourage clients to dream big
- They give back to communities
- Most importantly, they guide their clients to a financially stable environment allowing them to truly live and enjoy life.
I confess, I was skeptical but meeting my underwriter and real estate agent was the best thing in my life. Both ladies cared about me, helped me to overcome obstacles and taught me to be a better giver to others. I am fully committed to being an advocate of NACA resources, attending and volunteering at workshops for future buyers and telling to my friends and others about this incredible nonprofit organization focused on community in every way. I try to provide my experience, informing them, it is not an easy process, you will have obstacles to overcome and questions that may appear invasive. I also share that from those challenges that I am a much better steward of my personal finances, appreciative and grateful for NACA’s amazing team, who are always available to assist.
From bottom of my heart, thank you Ms. Wilkins and Ms. Thompson for working countless hour to help me purchase my home. I look forward living where I can share my happiness, serenity and love with my friends and family.
The following are the guidelines for this Forum and all NACA social media, including Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Pinterest, LinkedIn and Live Chat:
The following rules have always been posted near the top of the Forums page on the forum website at http://forums.naca.com, just above the links to the five forum categories:
Welcome to the NACA Forums! Please keep in mind that this is a public forum. Any derogatory, inflammatory or questionable content will be removed by administrators. Also, please DO NOT post any personal information, such as passwords, NACA ID numbers, or Social Security numbers; NACA Staff will never require this information on the Forums.
Disregard for the rules of the Forum and abuses of the Forum and other social media in general is not tolerated. Such activity hinders the effectiveness of the NACA social media efforts as tools for asking questions, sharing information and for those who are seeking help with problems in either the Home Save or Purchase programs. To prevent such abuses, the following rules apply for this Forum and all NACA social media:
F(orum) comes before E(mail):
Maybe not in the alphabet, but here in the forum, F comes before E. In other words, please post your question in the Forum rather than circumvent the system and send an Email to an address you happen to find in the forum. The forum exists for several purposes, not the least of which is the sharing of information that may be beneficial to many of our members.
Most of the questions we receive are more generic in nature than most people think. By posting a question in the Forum first, it can be most likely answered here in the Forum unless it involves specific information in your file. By handling the question or problem here whenever possible, other members experiencing a similar problem could get the answer and help they need more quickly and without making a single additional keystroke.
If your post does require specific information, you will be advised on the best means of contact with us so any personal information can be communicated securely and confidentially.
The Forum Does Not Replace NACA Services:
The NACA Forum or other NACA social media are in no way a substitute for NACA Counseling and Advocacy services whether in the Home Save or Purchase Programs, and information found here should not be considered a replacement for communicating with a NACA counselor, Member Services rep or any other NACA representative. While much of the information here is general in nature and applicable to most situations, specific questions regarding your file cannot be addressed in this or any other public forum for privacy reasons. Additionally, every file has unique factors and issues of its own. Therefore, you should always attempt to communicate your questions and concerns with your Mortgage Consultant in the Purchase Program and with a Counselor, Member Services or other Member Assistance Program (MAP) representative. Our Member Services Department can be reached at 425-602-6222 from 8:30am to 5:30 pm Eastern Time Monday through Friday.
Keep it Civil:
Another serious issue is the tone used in some messages. We eagerly invite anyone who is having what they perceive to be any sort of problem with the NACA process or on line system to use the NACA Forum and social media channels as a means of reaching out to us with those concerns so we can help solve them in whatever way we can. However, please remember to compose your message in the same manner in which you would like to receive the response. As noted above, “derogatory, inflammatory or questionable content” has always been grounds for posts to simply be deleted without response, and will continue to be so. Deletion of any and all messages from any individual or group of people is at the sole discretion of the Forum administrators. This includes sarcasm as well as insulting and accusatory statements. While we are in fact eager to help with any problems that may occur, if you can’t write without being cynical, you may want to hold off a bit until you can be more rational in expressing your concerns.
No Personal Information:
While this one should be common sense, it is surprising how many people will post their name, NACA ID number and even their telephone number in a forum post or even on Facebook. Please remember that what you write here can be read by anyone on the internet. This is not a membership-restricted site, so please do not post any information about yourself here that you would not announce over a microphone to a crowd of twenty thousand people. Again, that personal information starts with and includes your NACA ID number. Never post it or any other personal information in a public forum, here or anywhere else on the web.
Oh, By the Way, Who Am I Talking To?
Under other circumstances, this would actually be funny. We far too commonly receive emails from members who go to substantial effort to make sure they have provided a wonderfully detailed explanation of their problem or question to insure we have all the information necessary to address their concerns… Then forget to include their NACA ID number, leaving us in the dark or doing detective work to find out which file we are dealing with.
It’s really a simple, common sense rule. NEVER post your ID in a public place, but ALWAYS include it, every time, in private communications such as an email or the Live Chat system available through our website.
One Way or Another:
While we realize you intend to be thorough by doing so, posting the same message to the Forum, our Facebook page, and emailing it to a Forum administrator is actually counter-productive. Most likely, all three messages will go to the same person, which means answering the same question for the same person three separate times. This redundancy only slows down our response time to you and everyone else we are trying to help. So please limit yourself to one method when communicating with us.
Once is Enough:
Likewise, posting the same message in multiple threads in the Forum will have the same effect as posting through several different media.
Each still has to be addressed and responded to separately, which only slows down our response time and can confuse members who may then falsely think that they have read the entire thread previously and possibly miss out on some important information that could have a bearing on their own file.
Similarly, multiple messages each day with minor or random questions bog things down too. We want to answer those questions for you, but in such a circumstance, please send them all in one daily message if possible.
By posting in this Forum, you certify that you have read and agree to abide by these rules. Failure to comply with these rules will result in the deletion of offending posts and the writer potentially being banned from this Forum and other NACA social media.
As you can see, these are really just common sense rules, largely based on common courtesy. Abiding by these guidelines will help the NACA staff help you in whatever means possible and encourage a positive, free flow of information through this Forum, which is its most fundamental purpose.
This Monday, April 18th, is the last day to file 1040 tax returns with the IRS for the year 2015. (For members who live in Maine or Massachusetts, it’s Tuesday April 19.)
After Monday, 2015 tax returns are required for all files in the NACA Purchase Program in order to obtain NACA qualification or for NACA Credit Access to be granted. Likewise, 2015 tax returns will be required for all files in the NACA Home Save Program. Files in either program cannot move forward without the tax return after the 18th.
Taxes filed after March 15th where the 2015 transcripts (not returns) are not yet available, 2014 and 2013 transcripts are still acceptable. However, proof of 2015 filing (payment of taxes, tax return received or IRS stamp) will be required for files before they can go to a participating lender. For all other files, 2014 and 2015 IRS 1040 transcripts are required.
Please note: Filing a Form 4868 (automatic extension of filing deadline) will not exempt NACA members from the above requirements. Also, failure to pay any taxes owed will also halt the progress of a file.
Please contact NACA Member Services at 425-602-6222 with any questions.
Special thanks to NACA Member and about-to-be-homeowner Andre Goes for sending this message regarding his counselor, Anna Datta, in our Los Angeles office:
Hello NACA team,
Me and my wife are NACA members that are almost done with our process and I just want to shout out positive words for our MC Anna Datta.
Our process is coming from a long way, almost 2 years, most of delay have the reason that we had our first son right on the beginning which slowed down the application because my wife took about 7 months of maternity leave. I really appreciate all the positive words, guidance and instructions that Anna Datta gave us so we didn’t give up of our dream to own a House.
As soon as we got back in the process, everything went fast, Anna guided us in every step and we got approved. We already found the house that we loved and my agent is in touch with Anna preparing the paper work to give an offer to the seller.
Anna, thanks a lot for your patience with us. I believe, like every member, sometimes we freak out because we don’t know how to wait. Getting a mortgage loan is not like buying a car, that you go to a dealership and a couple hours later you leave with a car. Mortgage loan is more detailed. A little more complicated because I have two jobs plus my wife’s job.
Thanks a lot again Anna. You are a huge responsible for, real soon, my family will be rent-free and will be a home-owner.
You are the best.