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NEWLY LAUNCHED CRESTAR HOMEOWNERSHIP PLAN PROVIDES EDUCATION, SAVINGS FOR POTENTIAL BUYERS

           NEWLY LAUNCHED CRESTAR HOMEOWNERSHIP PLAN PROVIDES
                EDUCATION, SAVINGS FOR POTENTIAL BUYERS
    RICHMOND, Va., Nov. 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Crestar Mortgage Corporation is offering a new counseling and savings program designed to help prospective home buyers bridge the "affordability gap" by increasing their understanding of the mortgage process and helping them accumulate the cash needed to finance a home purchase.
    The Crestar Homeownership Plan is a personalized education, counseling and savings program tailored to the individual buyer's budget and homeownership goals.  Under the program, a Crestar Mortgage representative provides personal financial counseling and helps participants assess their buying power.  Also, the mortgage rep assists participants in developing a practical savings plan to amass the lump sum needed to cover their down payment and other fees.
    On successful completion  of the Homeownership Plan, the borrower may qualify for a discount of 20 percent on Crestar's Mortgage Corporation's origination fee as well as more liberal underwriting guidelines from Crestar.  In addition, the participant will receive an interest bonus one-half percent above the regular savings rate at Crestar Bank, and may be eligible for more liberal underwriting guidelines on his or her mortgage loan.
    The Homeownership Plan is being offered through Crestar Mortgage's 15 offices and all Crestar Bank branches in Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia.
    The plan, which has no fee or other cost, is designed for all income levels, and participation generally is expected to last from one year to 18 months.
    "We believe the Homeownership Plan fills a real need:  helping the first-time borrower understand what he or she needs to do to be eligible for a mortgage, and then assisting the borrower in implementing an effective savings plan," said J.H. Peele, Jr., Crestar Mortgage Corporation's senior vice president for residential production.
    "Also, for many buyers, especially first-time buyers, the mortgage process is often seen as daunting.  Participating in the plan can raise the individual's comfort  level, since the personal financial counseling and savings plan are tailored to his or her situation and homeownership goals."
    By participating in the Homeownership Plan, the buyer can determine how much house he or she can afford and become prequalified for a mortgage loan.
    In addition, the potential buyer participates in a savings plan designed to fit within the individual's budget and time frame for purchasing a home.  The savings plan is structured to provide the individual with the opportunity to "test drive" a mortgage and establish a simulated payment history before applying for a mortgage loan.
    "This simulated mortgage payment process demonstrates to potential lenders that the prospective borrower has established savings habits and a proven ability to manage an increased housing expense," Peele said.
    Crestar also provides homeownership seminars covering the mortgage application and settlement process, home selection, inspection and maintenance, default and foreclosure as well as other topics.  Such seminars are prerequisite for mortgage lending programs sponsored by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and others which offer the borrower more liberal underwriting guidelines.
    Crestar Mortgage is a subsidiary of Crestar Bank, which has 259 banking offices in Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia.
    -0-                            11/4/91
    /CONTACT:  Cheryl Jenkins, Corporate Communications, Crestar Bank, 804-782-5377, or J.H. Peele, Jr., Crestar Mortgage Corporation, 804-254-1750/
    (CRFC) CO:  Crestar Mortgage Corporation; Crestar Bank ST:  Virginia IN:  FIN SU:  PDT CM -- CH002 -- 0630 11/04/91 10:09 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 4, 1991
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