Homes for Heroes benefits police, fire and military

Homes for Heroes is a nationwide program offering rebates and discounts to local heroes who are buying or selling a home. Tim Sumner, left, and Patience Svor are local representatives for the program.
Homes for Heroes is a nationwide program offering rebates and discounts to local heroes who are buying or selling a home. Tim Sumner, left, and Patience Svor are local representatives for the program.

Discounts offered for those buying, selling or refinancing

by Jennie Zeitler, Staff Writer

Homes for Heroes is a community-minded company created to provide rebates and discounts for heroes who are buying or selling a home. The company’s mission is to provide “extraordinary savings to local heroes who provide extraordinary services” to the community every day.

The program was established in the wake of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, by a group of Minnesota business owners. What started as a local effort has become a nationwide savings program.

Homes for Heroes is offered to a core group which includes veterans, law enforcement personnel, educators and health care workers.

Two local businesses have joined with Homes for Heroes to provide those benefits locally.

Real estate agent Tim Sumner of Cornerstone Property Executives and Patience Svor of PrimeLending are now part of the Homes for Heroes team.

“PrimeLending sent out a flyer about Homes for Heroes, encouraging officers to participate,” Svor said. “This is dear to my heart because my husband, Eric, is in the Army. The program is a way to reward veterans, firefighters and police officers.”

Sumner is himself an Air Force veteran. He was encouraged to look into Homes for Heroes by his daughter-in-law from Wisconsin, who is also a realtor.

Both Svor and Sumner signed their contracts with Homes for Heroes in August, and were told about each other. They have joined forces to help people from start to finish in the home-buying or selling process.

“We’re really excited to get signed up,” Svor said. “Having company backing was great for me.”

People buying or selling a home through the program with Sumner will save 25 percent of the real estate agent’s commission, an amount that will vary since it’s negotiable.

“In addition, I give 5 percent of the commission directly to the Homes for Heroes Foundation, which helps heroes with financial needs,” Sumner said.

People using Svor’s services for mortgages or refinancing will have the underwriting fee of $495 waived. There will be no origination fee (usually 1 percent of the loan amount, which is variable).

“The savings on the realtor end is wonderful,” Svor said. “The savings cannot be given as cash back, but can be used for anything home-related that the buyer chooses such as closing costs, new carpet, appliances or home improvements.

“The two of us together on a purchase are crazy savings,” she said.

Sumner and Svor are working to locate partnering businesses to be “Friends of Heroes,” offering discounts to local heroes.

“If we have a flooring business involved and the buyer uses their savings to purchase flooring, then the total savings are increased,” Sumner said. “The more businesses that are involved, the greater the savings.”

Svor and Sumner put together a brochure and have gone to area businesses looking for help.

“We’re just getting our feet wet,” Sumner said. “We’re working on a presentation for Camp Ripley.”

Svor has been offering mortgage services in Little Falls for 15 years.

Sumner has been in the real estate business for 11 years. After being a chaplain for a Wadena recovery center, he established a local ministry, The River, at about the same time.

“The thing that motivates me to be involved is heroes being injured in their line of work and my desire to put actions to ‘thank-yous,’” he said. “To see people permanently injured while helping others causes me to want to help them — to honor them with more than a medal.”
Sumner was able to accompany his World War II veteran father on an Honor Flight to Washington, D.C. and was very moved by the experience. In addition, one of his cousins who is a Vietnam War vet was highly criticized after being shot twice.

“Those who were permanently injured as a result of a decision they made to help us all reminds me of the man who banged on the door for help in Luke 11:5-8, and was told to go away,” Sumner said. “This program puts feet on our prayers.

“It’s not about how much money we make,” he said. “It’s about how many heroes we can help.”

“We want to help those who help us every day,” said Svor.

For more information, contact Sumner at (320) 630-6260 or Svor at (320) 260-3228.