About CAFN

Capital Area Foreclosure Network

The Capital Area Foreclosure Network (CAFN) supports and brings together organizations that help homeowners at risk of foreclosure.  We work to ensure that people who are behind on their mortgage payments and worried about losing their home can help themselves or get help from a qualified nonprofit.

Our goal is to build on and enhance the work of nonprofit organizations, local governments and national partners that are addressing the ongoing foreclosure crisis. Through these organizations, homeowners, and renters, can gain access to the knowledge and information they need to address their personal foreclosure crisis. CAFN facilitates cooperation among housing counseling agencies, nonprofit organizations and government agencies so each can share best practices, form partnerships and expand outreach services to homeowners in distress.

Created in 2010

CAFN was created in April 2010 to combat the foreclosure crisis in the Washington, D.C., region. The network is led jointly by the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments. The Urban Institute provides CAFN and our members with strategic research and analysis, including an overview of the scope and intensity of the region’s foreclosure numbers.

CAFN’s leadership includes representatives from local governments, grass roots organizations, philanthropic organizations, and large national institutions, such as NeighborWorks America, the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

CAFN is working, in particular, to expand the number of housing counselors in the Washington, D.C. region and encourages homeowners to seek professional help from certified free nonprofit housing counselors.  Research by the Urban Institute has found that homeowners who work with housing counselors generally have better outcomes.

In addition, CAFN:

  • Provides comprehensive support to front-line organizations and local coalitions working with homeowners, or renters, facing foreclosure;
  • Conducts regional marketing and outreach campaigns urging at risk homeowners to get help and warning them to avoid costly foreclosure rescue scams; and
  • Researches and analyzes regional foreclosure data and trends to better target resources and identify service delivery gaps.


We are action oriented and high energy to help homeowners. Our acronym — “CAFN” — is pronounced caffeine!

CAFN Activities Since April 2010

  • Hosted more than a dozen events for hundreds of homeowners, housing counselors, realtors and others.
  • Placed more than 1,000 ads on buses urging residents who are behind on their mortgage to seek help.
  • Distributed more than 25,000 brochures in five languages  to educate the region’s homeowners and renters.
  • Conducted a study highlighting the need to fund more housing counselors.
  • Appeared in more than a dozen local and regional news outlets highlighting the need for foreclosure counselors.
  • Worked with our members to determine what THEY find the most critical in fighting foreclosures.
  • Launched two rounds of the Capital Area Foreclosure Prevention Fund to provide grants to area nonprofit housing counseling organizations.
  • Maintained an up to date website of activities in our area.
  • Hosted Counselor Appreciation Week.
  • Launched a foreclosure prevention text messaging campaign.