Affordable Housing Committee – The 'Go-To Source'

Our Affordable Housing Committee has laid a firm foundation for a productive 2017. We are a group of diverse professionals, with a goal to be the 'go-to' source for all REALTORS® and our affiliate partners in central Ohio. Additionally, our goal is to connect and educate the public, non-profits and REALTORS® on all things related to affordable housing.

A little about me, Kathleen. I earned my real estate license in 2013. Part of the reason I became a REALTOR® was the belief that, if you want your own home, and work hard, you’ve earned it and you should have it. It is also my belief that, if we don't help our clients find that affordable home they seek, usually, but not always, their first, they may never buy their dream home. In a nutshell, this is why I choose to serve on the Affordable Housing Committee.

A little about me, Cathy. This year I will celebrate my 33rd year in the mortgage business. I have a passion for working with first time homebuyers, especially helping them qualify for down payment assistance programs, and I love complicated loan programs. I am serving on the Affordable Housing Committee because I believe we are a powerful voice for all things relating to affordable housing in our community.
Our success in 2016 includes establishing our social media presence on Facebook with our Affordable Housing Forum, thanks to Jason Hottle, Affordable Housing Committee co-vice chair and chair of our Communication and Social Media Subcommittee. Our Facebook page can be found at We also helped the Reeb-Hosack neighborhood shine for REALTOR® Care Day by teaming up and rolling up our sleeves, parking cars, planting flowers and painting porches; and we sponsored a tax advantages continuing education class at our Sales Associates Day.

We’ve started 2017 with a bang with our recent Association retreat, where we committed, or re-committed to our Association message ‘Learn, Earn and Give Back.’ The focus for our January meeting was an invitation to lender partners specializing in helping our affordable housing clients, featuring the many programs they offer. Kudos to Affordable Housing Committee co-vice chair Lisa Helms-Miller for putting this lively forum together.

The live forums are held each month at Columbus REALTORS® Membership Headquarters on the second Friday of each month, 11a-noon. Preceding each forum is our committee meeting that begins at 10a sharp.

We encourage all members of the Columbus Association of REALTORS® to join the Affordable Housing Committee and to participate on one of our subcommittees, which are charged with the following duties:
1. Marketing and Sponsorship

  • Oversee and promote annual the Super Sunday Open House
  • Increase awareness and promotion of the Affordable Housing Committee projects/activities
  • Increase the committee’s visibility in the community, i.e., participating in neighborhood community festivals, such as South Side Shines
  • Maintain working relationships with other housing organizations (Homeport, Columbus Urban League, CMHA, Homes on the Hill, etc.)

2. Certified Affordable Housing REALTOR® Certification (CAHR)

  • Oversee the CAHR certification program
  • Develops education programming and volunteer opportunities geared specifically to the affordable housing market and to be used toward CAHR requirements

3. Communication and Social Media

  •  Increase committee presence/visibility online and in social media.
  • Use social media/technology to promote committee programs and activities
  • Oversee the Affordable Housing Committee Online Forum

The subcommittees meet during the breakout session at our regular committee meetings throughout the year.

We owe a debt of gratitude to many of this committee’s past-chairs. They have a dedication to this group that endures. Because of it, our foundation is strong and the future of this committee and its purpose is strong.

Cathy, Lisa, Jason, our committee members as well as our Columbus REALTORS® staff liaison Lynn Hackworth, and I warmly welcome you to come to any of our meetings, and to get involved.

Your contribution will help to direct our path through 2017, and into the future!

However, we do have a special request of each one of you. Would you be so kind as to invite a REALTOR® or affiliate friend or colleague to join you at one of our meetings? We want you to share your thoughts and ideas, as we all ‘Learn, Earn and Give Back’ together!
We begin each of our meetings with our mission statement, as a reminder to us why we do what we do, and to enlighten those who wish to join us in our work.

To connect REALTORS® to affordable housing opportunities available in the affordable housing market (properties priced up to $150,000) through education, community outreach and information sharing.


  1. Expand our community presence and outreach through local festivals and our annual Super Sunday event.
  2. Participate in Southside Shines and community projects in other central Ohio neighborhoods.
  3. Host 11 Live Forums.
  4. Certify at least 5 new Certified Affordable Housing (CAHR) REALTORS® (we certified two in 2016).
  5. Co-Host the Tax Strategy class at Sales Associates Day.
  6. Educate REALTORS® and industry providers on the benefits of affordable housing and our programs.

2017 LIVE FORUM SCHEDULE for the remainder of the year
Mar 10 -- “Credit Improvement Movement”
Apr 14 -- Energy Programs
May 12 -- Down Payment Assistance Grant providers – ADDI, Homeport and OHFA
Jun 9 -- Marketing to Millennials
July -- 14 Inspections (mold, lead, radon and bedbugs)
Aug 11 -- Changing Demographics
Sept 8 -- Home Ready and Home Possible 3% down loans programs
Oct 13 -- A look inside the Linden, Milo-Grogan and Hilltop communities
Nov 10 -- Legislative Update