From advertisements on the information highway to grass-roots promotions at local American Legion halls, mortgage lenders are in high gear to counter this current slump loan business.

American Home Funding Inc. this month began allowing loan officers to advertise on the Internet. The access brings the Richmond, Va., lender's services to countless young people, who represent a large pool of first- time homebuyers, said Alton C. Buie, senior vice president.

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