At just 24, she bought her first home.
Through Foster Success’s Credit Build program, Elizabeth raised her credit score by more than 100 points in a year. Last September — equipped with a credit score of 700 — she closed on a house in Milltown, Indiana, about 30 miles from Louisville.
Credit Build supports young adults, who have been in foster care, establish and build credit through guided savings and loan repayment.
In collaboration with our national partners, Foster Success works with eligible young people and supports them in opening a $300 credit-building loan. Participants make 12 monthly payments of approximately $28 a month into a locked savings account. Each successful payment is reported to all three credit bureaus, increasing credit scores each month.
After the loan is paid off, the $300 is returned to participants to continue building their financial wellness.
Elizabeth, who spent time in Indiana’s foster care system, was introduced to Foster Success through the Education and Training Voucher (ETV) program when she started college at Indiana University – Southeast. She also participated in the Opportunity Passport™ program.
Her ultimate goal, though, was to buy her own home, but with her credit score in the 500s, she wasn’t in a financial place to get approved for a mortgage. So, Director of Health & Financial Well-Being, Hannah Milner, introduced her to Credit Build.
“I had no clue why having good credit was so important and I had no clue how to get to that point. I didn’t have anyone to teach me or explain things like that to me. It was very difficult to get approved for things,” Elizabeth said.