Living St. Louis Spotlight on Credit Counseling

June 18, 2009

KETC’s Living St. Louis program recently featured a segment on credit counseling.  Producer Ruth Ezell follows the story of Laurie Ferrer and her family.  Like many other Americans, Laurie and her husband became dependent on their credit cards.  The Ferrer family was no longer able to pay the minimum balances on all their cards and their interest rates kept getting higher; eventually their debt became too much to handle.

But Laurie and her family sought help, and they found a solution to their debt problems at ClearPoint Credit Counseling Solutions (formerly known as ClearPoint Financial Solutions).  ClearPoint’s counseling services have already helped the Ferrer’s decrease their debt by 25% and they expect to be debt-free in three years.

You can watch the entire Living St. Louis segment HERE, or by watching the video below. 

If you or someone you know need credit counseling, call United Way’s 2-1-1 Referral Service at (800) 427-4626—they’ll help connect you with trusted resources.  You can also contact one of our partners, ClearPoint Credit Counseling Solutions, for help with credit card debt.


Mortgage Scams

April 20, 2009

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported today that the Missouri attorney general is suing two companies they believe are involved with mortgage scams.  To read the full article, CLICK HERE.

Over the summer Ruth Ezell did a Living St. Louis segment on mortgage scams.  You can check out the video below.

Legitimate housing counseling agencies won’t contact you or send out advertisements.  Their services also shouldn’t cost anything.  You should be wary of any company that seeks you out and/or that is charging you a lot of money for housing counseling.

If you or someone you know is facing foreclosure, make sure you use a HUD-certified housing counseling agency.  To find one, call United Way’s 2-1-1 Referral Service at (800) 427-4626.

Living St. Louis: Crown Candy

March 24, 2009

Ruth Ezell visits the Crown Square development project in North St. Louis City. The area located on 14th Street in the Old St. Louis Historical District was a once popular commercial area that lost its prominence, but is now being restored. Life-long resident John Bratkowski shares the street’s history, and Ezell speaks to community members and developers alike who are working together to help re-make the area, including Stephen Acree of the Regional Housing and Community Development Alliance, the organization that put together the funding for the project and is overseeing the construction. From now on it will be known as Crown Square, named after the old and popular Crown Candy store that is located there. Though the process had been long, neighborhood residents and developers are equally enthusiastic.

The Financial Crisis Explained

March 10, 2009

In January of this year Channel 9 hosted an hour-long, town-hall style, call-in program addressing the Financial Crisis and how it’s impacting St. Louis. The segment below addresses how we got here.

Learn how YOU can be proactive!

February 19, 2009

On Tuesday, January 27, 2009, KETC/Channel 9 broadcast “Facing the Financial Crisis” to help the community learn more about how to deal with the current economic climate. This is a summary of the broadcast town hall meeting, which Ruth Ezell hosted, where community specialists answered specific questions on the financial crisis. The panel consisted of Chris Krehmeyer, president and CEO, Beyond Housing; Eric Madkins, director of housing and foreclosure intervention, Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis; Jacqueline Tammenga, area director, ClearPoint Financial Solutions; and Todd Swanstrom, Des Lee endowed professor of community collaboration and public policy administration at UMSL’s Public Policy Research Center. You can check out the video below.



A Community-Wide Effort

December 4, 2008

As a way to illustrate the community-wide effort that has taken place with Facing the Mortgage Crisis we have created the following 3-minute video. We have been working with 26 community partners in order to connect people to resources and raise awareness of the impact of the mortgage crisis on the St. Louis region. At the end of the day this effort is not about us or our partners; it’s about strengthening the St. Louis community.

Take a look at the video below.

Jefferson County – Living St. Louis Video

August 12, 2008
August 12, 2008

Living St. Louis Producer Ruth Ezell examines the mortgage crisis in Jefferson County, an area which experienced more than 900 foreclosures in 2007 alone. So far in 2008, there have been nearly 600 foreclosures. Jim Yates of Pevely is a single father and one of the county’s homeowners facing foreclosure. Over the years, Yates had been refinancing to make ends meet, but now faced with a failing septic system, he is seeking assistance from the Economic Development Corporation of Jefferson County (EDC).