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Wells Fargo and Rebuilding Together Team Up For Real Estate Owned (REO) Home Program; Transforming REOs into Affordable Homes for Sale

America's largest mortgage lender donates REO properties to Rebuilding Together affiliates to renovate; use profits from sale to help homeowners in need

WASHINGTON, Aug. 8, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Rebuilding Together and Wells Fargo recently have joined efforts to help communities across the country transition Real Estate Owned (REOs) properties into safe, affordable homes while continuing to help existing homeowners with repair or renovation needs through a new REO homes program.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20090421/REBUILDINGLOGO)

Through the REO program, Wells Fargo donates foreclosed homes to Rebuilding Together affiliates in eight cities. Participating Rebuilding Together Affiliates are in the following cities: Baltimore, Los Angeles, Oakland, Philadelphia, Providence, St. Paul (Twin Cities), Tampa, and Washington, DC. 

Each Rebuilding Together Affiliate then renovates the donated REO property and works with a real estate agent to sell the home to a buyer that is between 80-120% of the area median income (AMI). As part of the initiative, buyers are also required to complete a Homebuyer Education class and show a certificate of completion before closing.  The buyers also must live in the home; homes cannot be sold to an investor.

Once the home is sold, the proceeds from the sale are returned to the Rebuilding Together affiliate's operating fund, allowing the organizations to continue to make critical home repairs for homeowners in need.

"We are so grateful to Wells Fargo for helping Rebuilding Together establish the REO program as a way to transform REO properties back toward viable homes in stable communities, while helping low- and moderate-income families obtain safe, healthy and affordable housing," said Gary A. Officer, President and CEO of Rebuilding Together, "The sale of these properties can provide critical income to support Rebuilding Together Affiliates in their core mission work."

In 2011, Wells Fargo Housing Foundation programs delivered a record $23.4 million, 697 discounted and 1245 donated properties to support local affordable housing and community revitalization programs.

"Wells Fargo is proud to support the work of Rebuilding Together to help create affordable and sustainable housing opportunities for low-to-moderate income families," said Kimberly Jackson, head of the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation.

The first home to be sold under the program was in Philadelphia, PA where the affiliate renovated the home in the Greater Northeast neighborhood and sold it to a first time home buyer who is also a police officer candidate.

In Tampa, FL the home donated by Wells Fargo sold within three weeks of it being donated to Rebuilding Together Tampa Bay.

Rebuilding Together Twin Cities also has renovated its first house in Richfield, MN through the program and put it up for sale. Rebuilding Together Twin Cities has plans to renovate and sell a total of four homes this fiscal year.  

In addition, Wells Fargo has made grants to other Rebuilding Together affiliates (Milwaukee and New Orleans) for the purpose of rehabilitating and/or purchasing REO properties (Roanoke and Sacramento) as part of their asset building strategies and to support the mission of their local organizations. 

ABOUT REBUILDING TOGETHER
Rebuilding Together believes in a safe and healthy home for every person. Rebuilding Together provides critical repairs to an existing home, addressing both structural issues and those that affect the health of the homeowners. House by house, block by block, we work with our nearly 200 affiliates, 200,000 volunteers, who are skilled tradespersons, corporate partners and everyday citizens, to repair homes, to stabilize and revitalize communities. For nearly 25 years, we have seen the benefits when people remain in their homes: lives are improved and communities are revived. See the difference we make at www.RebuildingTogether.org. You can also follow Rebuilding Together on Twitter @rebldgtogthr or become a fan on Facebook at Facebook.com/RebuildingTogether.

About Wells Fargo
Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a nationwide, diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.3 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through more than 9,000 stores, 12,000 ATMs, the Internet (wellsfargo.com), and has offices in more than 35 countries to support the bank's customers who conduct business in the global economy. With approximately 265,000 full-time equivalent team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 26 on Fortune's 2012 rankings of America's largest corporations. Wells Fargo's vision is to satisfy all our customers' financial needs and help them succeed financially.

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