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Empowerment Resource Academy(ERA)

The Academy’s main focus is to educate families to achieve self-sufficiency, build wealth and maintain financial stability. ERA accomplishes this through providing: pre-purchase counseling and education, and foreclosure prevention services. We provide rental counseling and eviction prevention, mobility counseling, and resident engagement and empowerment services.

Classes and Workshops

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Crisis Financial Management and Benefits’-Access – This course is designed to assist participants in planning for your financial future and taking control, why have a budget and spending plan, emergency budgeting, tips for maximizing income and lowering debt, the importance of credit and knowing your credit rights, Covid-19 resources and benefits access for homeowners and tenants. Register Now >

Foreclosure Prevention Clinic – This two-hour clinic is designed to inform the foreclosure process in Connecticut, the steps one could take to avoid foreclosure. Clinic participants receive information about the role of housing counseling, the judicial foreclosure and mediation process in Connecticut, protecting themselves from foreclosure scams and information about programs and resources available to homeowners. Register Now >

Eight-hour Pre-Purchase Class – Provides in-depth instruction on the steps towards homeownership to anyone interested in buying their first home. This class is designed to expand your knowledge of the home buying process and financing options. Register Now >

Three-Hour Pre-Closing Class – Provides an overview of the financial and practical steps involved in buying and maintaining a home. This is an abbreviated version of the 8 hour First Time Homebuyers Class. CHFA loan number is required for registration. Register Now >

Landlord Tenant Right & Regulations Class – Provides an overview on the range of financial and practical topics that a homebuyer should understand before completing the 2-4 family homeownership process. Register Now >

Financial Fitness Class – This course is designed to assist participants in achieving a comprehensive understanding of their financial situation including where your money comes from, where it is going, living within your means, aligning your spending with your personal priorities, having a financial plan, and feeling prepared for financial changes. Financial Fitness provides participants with an awareness of issues of issues related to financial wellness and a multitude of tools to use when making decisions that will help mitigate financial stress and promote healthy money management. Participants will learn about setting financial goals, strategies for saving money, budgeting, understanding credit, and debt management. Register Now >

Planning for the Future Workshop – This workshop is offered to all clients that are interested in learning about what to do with their money after they’ve achieved their goal of homeownership. Topics include: Financial Planning 101 for the New Home Owner, maintaining a workable household and mortgage budget, tax deductions and estate planning, insurance options, and record keeping. Register Now >

Budget Workshop – BNT’s Budget Workshop focuses on how to maintain a workable budget. Financial planning basics are covered along with tips and tools on how to budget your money better and saving at the same time. Register Now >

Credit Workshop – This workshop covers topics such as how to obtain your credit report, how to build and maintain a satisfactory credit score, and will offer an overview of credit reporting and FICO scoring. In addition to this, the course will cover other types of credit, such as non-traditional credit, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, how to resolve credit issues and will touch on the basics of identity theft and credit scams. Register Now >

Budgeting through Extreme Couponing – This workshop covers the basic couponing principals meant to make saving fun. Learn how to save more money and stay on a budget by using coupons while stocking up on necessary items. Register Now >

Fair Housing Workshop – This workshop incudes an overview of federal, state and local fair housing laws, identifying fair housing violations, fair housing violation in mortgage lending , what to do if you are a victim of housing discrimination. Register Now >


One-on-one Counseling

Pre-Purchase Counseling – During one-on-one sessions, the counselor identifies steps needed to become mortgage eligible and ready to take on the responsibilities of homeownership. It includes budget, financial and credit analysis, action plan and assessment, referral and follow-up. While receiving pre purchase homeownership counseling at BNT, the staff will provide general information and materials about housing opportunities and issues.

Foreclosure Prevention Counseling – During one-on-one sessions the counselor reviews client’s income, expenses and spending habits, in order to evaluate their unique financial situation relative to their housing needThe counselor works with the homeowner, lenders and other parties as necessary to successfully implement the foreclosure prevention strategy including a forbearance, loan modification, refinance, etc.

Reverse Mortgage Counseling (HECM) – The counselor will discuss the client’s needs and circumstances; provide information about reverse mortgages and other alternative types and sources of assistance that might be available to the client. Once the session is completed, the counselor will issue a certificate, which verifies for a lender that the client has successfully completed counseling.

Credit Counseling – One-on-one counseling on how to build and maintain a satisfactory credit score, and will offer an overview of credit reporting and FICO scoring. How to correct issues in your credit report and increase your credit scores.

Benefits Access – Screenings help determine available resources and referrals to mainstream benefits and resources, such as SNAP and energy assistance, health care, as well as referrals to job training and placement programs such as Career Resources and Workplace.

To schedule a one-on-one counseling session, please call (203)290-4255.


BNT provides safe, affordable housing and counseling services that help our neighbors and our neighborhoods succeed.