Russell Simmons, music stars give mortgage advice

October 18, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
With the housing market in a slump, foreclosures on the rise and lenders keeping a tighter grip on mortgage money, about 2,000 interested consumers turned out Friday night to get real estate advice from ... music stars. Hip-hop music pioneer Russell Simmons, along with mortgage consultants and entertainment figures such as Ludacris, Yung Joc, Gorilla Zoe, D. Woods of the girl group Danity Kane and music executive Kevin Liles, spoke to the crowd at the event billed as the Hip-Hop Summit at Clark Atlanta University. It's tied to the Oct. 23 BET Hip-Hop Awards show.

The theme: "Urging People to 'Get Your Money Right!"' Simmons believes now is the best time to buy a home because the property will eventually appreciate.

"There are opportunities out there, but people just don't know about it," Simmons said. "With financial stability, it's a great time to buy when it's low. It'll pick back up in the long run."

Participants came away with an 86-page booklet, half in English and half in Spanish, stressing the importance of home ownership, a solid credit score and other vital steps for first time home buyers.

One of those who attended, Aaliyah Mitchell, 24, said, "I'm certainly going to benefit from this."

Mitchell, a former student at Clark Atlanta who now attends a tech school, added, "With stars like Russell Simmons and Ludacris speaking to us, who don't understand about purchasing a home, I think we'll have more understanding now."


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