Virtual Financial Literacy Seminars for The NID Housing Counseling Agency

From budgeting basics to house-buying seminars, the NID Virtual Talks give people an opportunity to learn about topics in the comfort of their own home.

Supporting the community is at the forefront of First Federal Lakewood’s mission. Chalana Williams, SVP, chief community development officer at First Federal Lakewood, saw an opportunity to partner with Cleveland’s NID Housing Counseling Agency to bring education and financial literacy to the community’s residents. The NID Housing Counseling Agency helps homebuyers become mortgage ready.

Different topics require a variety of experts – and that’s why Williams partners with various banking departments within First Federal Lakewood to present about financial wellness, buying a home, money management, obtaining a mortgage loan and understanding budgeting and credit. There are two home buying seminars and one financial wellness workshop in the summer and one seminar in the fall.

“When I am conducting a first-time home buying seminar, I present information on budgeting and credit. Then, a loan officer will cover the mortgage side of the presentation,” said Williams. “There are two different angles. When the loan officer has an individual who doesn’t qualify for a loan, they send the customer to NID. Then, NID will send them back to the loan officer when they’re credit-ready.”

When the COVID-19 pandemic started, Williams had to get creative about the partnership and how to proceed with hosting the classes.

“We had to pivot to virtual classes during the pandemic,” she said. “It’s a challenge because you have to learn to connect with the audience when you’re not in front of them. That was a learning curve that I successfully overcame.”

Teaching these classes is incredibly rewarding, especially since it ties into First Federal Lakewood’s overall mission: Proudly serving surrounding communities and meeting the needs of our citizens today and well into the future.