There may come a time when you decide your current space isn’t meeting your needs. Whether you need more room or an updated kitchen, you might reach a point when you decide that something has to be done. But how do you decide what to do? Do you make the necessary renovations to your current home, or do you relocate entirely? 


Why renovate?

One of the top reasons to renovate rather than move is to keep your home’s location. If you love the area where you live, you don’t give that up for an additional bedroom or closet – you can instead tackle a project that will make your current home better meet your needs. 


Another benefit of renovation is customization. When you make renovations, you are able to choose all of the finishes, paint colors and materials to fit your personal style. When you buy, you’re moving into a home finished with someone else’s preferences. On top of that, renovating increases your property value. If you already have equity in your home, it can help you add additional value to your home. If you do have to sell your house one day, a home that has been renovated could sell at a higher price point.


Why relocate?

Renovation isn’t for every family or for every home. If you live with family, consider their size now and in the future. Are you planning on having children, or do you have relatives that may move in with you in the next couple of years? If so, you may need more room than a simple renovation project can give you. Similarly, if you live alone you might consider relocating to a downsized space. Relocation can also be beneficial just so that you can avoid the frustrations of renovation – living your normal life in a home that has become a construction site can be difficult, time-consuming and stressful. Purchasing a home also provides you with a new investment, opening up your future for even more opportunity. 


While weighing both of your options, it is still important to consider cost. What makes the most financial sense for you and your family? If your current home is already at the top of the price range for your neighborhood, adding new features through renovations won’t have a significant return on your investment. If you don’t have much equity in your current home, selling and buying a new one might be more expensive and can impact the wealth you’ve built. Talk with housing experts at United Housing to discuss your options fully. Give us a call at 901-272-1122.

Facing the possibility of losing your home is frightening, and even more so if you aren’t sure what your next step should be. With unemployment at record levels, and other hardships brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, many Memphians are facing the very real possibility of eviction or foreclosure. So, what do you do if you think you might lose your home?


Take action

Start by reviewing the resources provided by Home901 – Memphis and Shelby County’s one-stop housing resource center. If you know that you might not be able to make some rent or mortgage payments, follow the instructions on their resource guide related to your specific situation.


Make a payment plan

Contact your mortgage lender or landlord about creating a payment plan. Representatives from United Housing can assist you in creating a plan to pay back the payments you’ve missed and any future ones, too. Additionally, United Housing can help facilitate communication between you and your lender or landlord, ensuring all options are discussed. 


Many providers will be open to the idea of a payment plan instead of immediate eviction. In fact, in a survey distributed to landlords in the Memphis area, the Memphis Division of Housing and Community Development found that 81% of landlords were willing to work through an eviction settlement program, waiving eviction and late fees with the promise of a payment plan.


Seek support services

Luckily, there are many government programs or nonprofit organizations that can provide you with short-term relief for essential expenses – like childcare, pet food, utilities, transportation and other needs. United Housing can help you determine whether or not you qualify for assistance programs. Saving funds in these areas can help you put money toward your home, which might ultimately prevent eviction or foreclosure. 


Make plans for transitional living

Even as you work toward keeping your home, it is wise to look for other living arrangements in case your eviction or foreclosure goes through. We want to empower you – many people go through eviction or foreclosure and find stability through housing on the other side. That’s not said to minimize the trauma and hardship that come with foreclosure and eviction, but it is to assure you that there are pathways forward for you and your family. We can still help make your dream of owning a home a reality.  If you think you are at risk of getting evicted, or if you have any questions, call United Housing at 901-272-1122 today. 

We know that the eviction process can be scary and traumatic, and we want to help. Our team of trained housing experts are here to walk you through the process to help you keep your current home.

The best way to prevent eviction is to reach out for help before you get a notice of eviction from your landlord. If you’re having trouble making your payments, reach out to United Housing at 901-272-1122. We can help you budget to make payments easier, negotiate with your landlord or connect you with available resources in your community.

If you have already received an eviction notice, we can still help. There are a few things that you can do immediately to help you stay in your home. 

Record the date you received your eviction notice.

To help you in the best way possible, we need to know whether your eviction was filed before or after March 2020. COVID-19 protections within the CARES Act apply to evictions filed after late March 2020. We can still help you no matter when your eviction was filed, but the tools we use will be different depending upon your unique situation.

Record your reason for eviction. 

The protections for renters included in the CARES Act state that landlords can’t evict tenants for missing payments for 90 days during the COVID-19 pandemic. Landlords can still file eviction for other reasons, like breaking your lease agreement, destruction of property or illegal activity. We can still help you if you are being evicted for a reason other than missed payments, but we need to know that ahead of time so we can compile the right information to help you.

Gather proof of financial hardship.

Eviction protection in the CARES Act does not require proof of financial hardship to justify missed rent payments, but including this information as we work through your case can help us access support. There are national, state and community programs that can help people who are struggling with finances because of COVID-19. With your proof of financial hardship, you may have access to additional funds that might help you get back on your feet. This proof could include an email from your employer informing you of layoffs because of COVID-19, furlough paperwork, etc.  

Call United Housing. 

Once you’ve compiled your information, give us a call at 901-272-1122. Our team of trained housing counselors can help walk you through the eviction process. We believe that decent, affordable housing is a human right, and we will advocate for you to help you stay in your home.

While indoor furniture can come at a high price, sometimes outdoor furniture seems unnecessarily expensive. But during the summer, it sure is nice to have an outside area to relax alone, or when things are a little safer, with guests. Luckily, there are a few things you can do to create a nice outdoor space for your home without breaking the bank.

Invest in plants

Nothing brightens things up like a few flowers. A great, inexpensive way to add instant charm and homeyness to your outdoor living area is by buying a few plants. Purchasing cheaper plants, like perennials from your local hardware store, can fill up empty spaces and add a pop of color – all with relatively little cost. Just make sure you’re watering them appropriately! Gardening can become pricey when you’re frequently replacing plants.


Adding a few string lights to any outdoor space can make it look gorgeous at night. Holiday-style string lights don’t cost much,especially if you buy them out of season (hello, January sales!). And, they easily wrap around posts or can attach to any covering you have outside. If you’d prefer less artificial lighting, consider buying a few tiki torches or maybe even a couple of lanterns. A more time-consuming, do-it-yourself lighting option is to build a fire pit. Fire pits aren’t for everyone, but they do add a nice ambience and the possibility of s’mores! 

Cheap chairs

Got any old beach chairs lying around? Add a colorful throw pillow for a free, weather-proof outdoor chair. Plastic folding chairs or simple Adirondack chairs are another inexpensive seating option you could find anywhere, or one that you might already have. If you think they need a little sprucing up, add a few coats of paint to refresh them for your outdoor seating room.

Get creative with your decor

Old bottles can become a quirky centerpiece or a vase for your blooming flowers. Spray paint an empty paint can using a bright color and use it as a planter! Items you’d usually ignore – wooden crates, rusty water cans or even an old tire – could be turned into a mini garden, piece of furniture or eye-catching decorative item for your sitting area. The sky’s the limit!

No matter what you decide to do to your backyard, it’s a space that everyone will love. Nothing beats the feeling of mixing home sweet home with the great outdoors!

At United Housing, we want to help you find and stay in a healthy, affordable home. Part of helping you stay in your home is fighting against unfair evictions or foreclosures. We can help you understand when you might be at risk of losing your home and share resources that are available to prevent that from happening. 

The best way to prevent eviction is to reach out for help before your landlord has filed for eviction. If making payments becomes challenging, we can provide you with our available services such as financial counseling, budgeting and homebuyer education classes. 

But advance notice isn’t always possible. If you’re notified of a late payment or potential eviction, we can help you develop an action plan.Through this process, we’ll review your current bills, brainstorm payment plans and help you contact your property manager. We can also help you register for available resources, such as rental assistance or rent relief, which are income-based funds derived from the government, community and nonprofit programs. For more information on rent relief, search here for your resources from your state housing authority, or visit the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development website

In response to the economic impact of the pandemic, Congress passed the CARES Act. This required most landlords to stop evictions for missed payments – even if the reason for missed payments isn’t related to COVID-19 – for 120 days. Eviction notices can only be issued after the 120 days expires, and the tenant is not expected to move out until 30 days after they receive the notice. Additionally, no late fees incurred during this period are applicable. United Housing can help you determine whether or not your eviction is covered by the CARES Act.

Sometimes, eviction notices are brought on by problems outside of your control, such as unemployment or a medical issue. Being faced with the possibility of losing your place of residence can cause other issues to arise, such as mental health problems or food insecurity. Along with eviction prevention and rent relief assistance, at United Housing, we can also help you find support and information regarding unemployment benefits, SNAP or WIC eligibility, legal representation and any other assistance you might need while facing potential eviction. 

Ultimately, remember, that while an eviction notice is frightening, you don’t have to panic. United Housing will support you and walk you through your options to help you stay in your home. 

While summer brings a lot of fun, it also brings dangerously high temperatures. Here are a few tips to remember as you work to keep your house and yourself cool this summer:


Stay hydrated

The number one, and perhaps most important tip on our list is staying hydrated. Our bodies already need at least eight glasses of water a day, but we need even more water when we spend half of the day sweating! Drink plenty of water each day, and even more so when exercising or spending any time outside. 


Treat yourself – don’t overheat yourself 

While drinking water is always important, there are a few more fun ways to avoid overheating this summer. Enjoy your favorite cold dessert – popsicles, ice cream, you name it! If you’re able, visit a swimming pool to cool down. You could even invest in an inexpensive “baby pool” to inflate in your backyard, which is fun for the whole family to splash around in. 


Keep the heat out

It’s easy to forget that heat can still enter your home without a door or window being open. The sheer sunlight alone can heat up your house! If you haven’t already, consider investing in curtains to cover your windows. Not only does it block sunrays, but it adds a nice touch to your living space. As you work to keep the heat out, be cognizant of the heat you create inside your home. Using the oven and the dishwasher both can heat up your home significantly, meaning heat-free recipes and manual dish washing might be a few things you should implement this summer.


Keep the air in

Allow cool air to constantly flow through your home without increasing your air conditioning bill too much. Utilize your ceiling fans throughout the day, and consider purchasing a few box fans to place in different areas of your home during the summer months. 


This summer, don’t forget to be responsible, stay cool and have fun!

Foreclosure happens when homeowners are unable to make mortgage payments, and a lender takes ownership of the property. Unfortunately, many homeowners have found themselves facing foreclosure due to financial hardships brought on by COVID-19. 

Most foreclosure processes begin anywhere from three to six months after the first missed mortgage payment, but even once that process has started, there is still time for the borrower to work with their lender. Every state has different foreclosure laws, and Tennessee’s can be found here.  

Throughout this period of national emergency, the federal government has offered several mortgage relief options for FHA-permitted borrowers. One of those options is forbearance, or the temporary hold on house payments for a six-month period, with the option of extending the period an additional six months if requested by the borrower. While private mortgage lenders are not required to provide these options, many are offering repayment options if lenders can demonstrate financial hardship because of COVID-19. United Housing can help you navigate plans with your lender.

Forbearance is not payment forgiveness, as all mortgage payments owed must resume being paid in full at the close of the forbearance period – however, no lump sum payment is required. While these types of relief programs do exist, it is still in your best interest as a borrower to continue to pay your mortgage if you are able to. If you find yourself back at work and able to make payments, do so as soon as possible despite the forbearance period, as missed payments can still accrue interest, making the lifetime cost of your mortgage more expensive.

If you are late on mortgage payments, or will be unable to pay them in the future, immediately contact your lender in order to discuss available options like forbearance, and which ones are right for you and your family. According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, your mortgage servicer will ask you to either indirectly or directly confirm that your financial hardships are related to the current pandemic; however, you will not have to provide any documentation. 

While so many aspects of homeownership are still uncertain, United Housing is here to help. If you are worried about making mortgage payments, call us at 901-272-1122, or visit our website to speak with someone about foreclosure, forbearance and what we can do to support you. Additionally, you can visit the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s website for homeowner-specific information on forbearance, as well as other housing resources as they relate to COVID-19. 

P: +1 901.272.1122

2750 Colony Park Drive
Memphis, TN 38118



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