Activist developer Frank Parlato Jr. has issued a call to arms for the
city's working class renters: Buy a house.
"Get up and get qualified for a mortgage," he said. "You owe it to the
city, your family and yourself to get qualified and get a home."
To them, a non-profit organization that Parlato has helped establish now is
offering to help prospective buyers determine if they qualify for a
mortgage. The organization, Neighbors Inc., has established a hot line that
usually can tell callers within an hour whether they're bankable. Neighbors
Inc. is being assisted in the program by Broadway-Fillmore Neighborhood
Some city residents are under the mistaken assumption they don't earn
enough to qualify for a mortgage, Parlato said. Others simply don't know
how to go about obtaining one.
"There are 10,000 people in the city who are qualified to own a house and
don't even know it," he said.
And, he added, there is an ample supply to meet the demand of prospective
There are more than 1,300 homes, mostly singles and doubles, for sale on
the East Side. In addition, Neighbors Inc. is ready to match up buyers with
about 200 properties that absentee owners are willing to sell.
"The market it glutted," Parlato said. "There's a tremendous opportunity
like there's never been before."
Given the price of houses on the East Side, Parlato said families with an
income as low as $ 12,000 can potentially qualify for a mortgage. The key
to qualifying, he said, is having a steady job and a reasonably good credit
history. Parlato noted that loan standards have been liberalized in recent
years because of new federal regulations and that even those with a
bankruptcy in their history could be eligible.
The number for Neighbors Inc. is 885-5463. Callers should be prepared to
provide basic information on their employment and credit history. Neighbors
Inc. will review the information, run a credit check and tell the caller
whether they appear qualified to obtain a mortgage. Parlato cautioned that
the assessment would be preliminary and that a formal application through a
Realtor or bank would be necessary to actually obtain a mortgage.
Neighbors Inc. is continuing to field offers from absentee landlords who
want to sell their properties. Parlato said about 600 properties have been
offered for sale. The group has hired eight neighborhood residents to make
repairs on properties it is buying in anticipation of reselling them to