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STEPS Toward Homeownership Conference

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  The CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® STEPS Toward Homeownership addresses housing affordability from the perspective of financial literacy. Did you know over half of all renters in California thought you needed at least 20% down to purchase a home? The reality is there are programs available that enable a purchase with much lower down payments.  This program brings relevant information to our members about credit scores, financial planning, leveraging down payment resources and options for low to moderate income earners so that we can educate our buyers. The CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® supports RESPONSIBLE homeownership. 

Where we’re STEPPIN’ to next:

STEPS Toward Homeownership virtually throughout CA

Date: December 8, 2021
Time: 10 am - 12 pm
Location: Live Virtual Event on Zoom

Financing the American Dream


Register Today!


Have you already attended a STEPS Toward Homeownership Conference? Spread the word! Share these event flyers to inspire your fellow REALTORS® to become #HomeownershipExperts! 


The STEPS Toward Homeownership program has been cut down into digestible sections providing resources for REALTORS® to educate renters, prospective first-time home buyers, clients who have had a prior foreclosure or short sale, and Baby Boomers interested in helping their children or grandchildren become responsible homeowners. Experts will share philosophies on:

  • Strategies for Financial Health
  • Trends in the Economic Environment
  • Engaging in the Process
  • Products for Success
  • Support from Beginning to End

What's in it for me?:

Attendees will acquire financial literacy knowledge and strategies to bolster your referral pipelines in the local community and  help prospective buyers with financing expectations, down payment assistant options, and FHA vs. conventional loan programs. In addition, we have focused on the REALTOR® view as well, to give reasonable understanding of how to stay involved, without taking on additional roles.

Initial Plan for December 8th Event:

Why Homeownership Matters - 10 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.

Understanding Homeowner Needs & Setting Expectations - 10:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

  • Market Knowledge & Insights
  • Ensuring Fair & Equal Opportunities for All Buyers
  • Homebuyer Consultation
  • REALTOR® Ethics
  • Being the Local Expert / Build & Protect Reputation
  • Communications – Clients & Agents

Building the Winning Team & Reviewing the Playbook - 10:30 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.

  • Integrating Sales Contract with Lending Expectations
    • Minimizing Contingency Concerns
    • Negotiating Repairs/Credits (Market)
    • Appraisals
  • Knowledge about the programs leads to the best results.
  • Resource Lists & Suggested Best Practices - Working with Lending Partners & Programs
  • Pre-Approval of Clients, Builds Relationship for Both Mortgage Ready & those Still Looking
  • Budget Preparedness/Homebuyer Readiness Education/FICO / Credit Requirements
  • Documentation Materials that may be Necessary 
  • Developing Client Scenarios

Financing the Deal - Putting it all Together - 10:45 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

  • Different levels of Knowledge with Available Products
  • Setting Expectations & Timelines
  • What Does it Take to Qualify? and What is the Required Paperwork
  • Mortgage Certificate Credits (MCCs)
  • Information about FHA, Conventional, Jumbo, and Special Loan Program

Leveraging Down Payment Assistance (DPA) - 11:30 a.m. - 11:50 a.m.

  • http://FindDownPayment.car.org
    • Homebuyer Grants & Programs
    • Mortgage Certificate Credits (MCCs)
  • Available 2nd TD's 
    • Are there DPA Programs for 2-4 units?
    • Are High Balance Loans an Option
    • Manufactured & Condos Available?
  • Following up on Client Scenarios with DPA

Using STEPS in Your Business - 11:50 a.m. - 12 p.m.

  • Wrap it in a Bow
  • Action Items from Our Experts
  • Transition to Breakout Sessions and Follow-up Expectations

and then there was...

The BREAK-OUT Sessions - 12:10 p.m. - 12:40 p.m.

  • Sponsored Break-Outs
  • Answering those Burning Questions
  • More Detailed Resource Materials


We Would Like to Thank Our Sponsors:

Bank of America Logo

Crosscountry Mortgage Logo

Guild Mortgage Logo

Homebridge Logo

Chase logo




Your Planned December 8th STEPS Panelists: 

Carolyn Sunseri - Golden State Finance Authority
Carolyn Sunseri 
Golden State Finance Authority
[email protected]


Yong Choi

Guild Mortgage
[email protected]


Molly Ellis Headshot 2
Molly Ellis
California Housing Finance Agency (CalHFA)
[email protected]


Abel Fregoso Jr.
Abel Fregoso Jr.
Homebridge Financial
[email protected]


Faramarz Moeen-Ziai headshot
Faramarz (FM) Moeen-Ziai
CrossCountry Mortgage
[email protected]


Rose Ann Djelmane
Bank of America (BofA)
[email protected]


Sean Moss STEPS Headshot
Sean Moss
Down Payment Connect
[email protected]


Rolanda Wilson
Rolanda Wilson
NID Housing Counseling Agency
[email protected]


Suchada Lerknant
Chase Home Loan
[email protected]


Samuel Luna, Sr. Director Single-Family Affordable Lending
Freddie Mac
[email protected]



Kevin Brown, Broker Owner, 2014 Past C.A.R President


Marc Farfel
Marc Farfel, Transaction Rescue Manager, Host
TransactionResc[email protected]


Otto Catrina
Otto Catrina, 2022 President




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