Rural Housing Funding of Nearly $109 Million Provided through USDA Rural Development

LINCOLN, Nebraska  October 26, 2016—Nearly $109 million was delivered in federal fiscal year 2016 by USDA Rural Development to achieve homeownership, complete home repairs and to provide rental assistance to rural Nebraska families.  USDA Rural Development oversees a $855.7 million housing portfolio in Nebraska of affordable rental properties and single family home loans that have maintained low delinquency rates.  There is funding available for Fiscal Year 2017 and applications are being accepted.

“Rural Development is proud to report that nearly $109 million was invested in housing this fiscal year.  Growing our rural areas is important and with that brings the need for housing.  That is why Rural Development’s homeownership and rural rental housing programs are so vital.    It is also essential to have programs in place for health and safety repairs,” said Nebraska State Director Maxine Moul, USDA Rural Development.

USDA Rural Development has two loan programs that provide affordable homeownership opportunities to rural Americans: the Single Family Housing Guaranteed Loan program and the Single Family Housing Direct Loan program.  Both of these programs typically do not require any down payment and financing is available at affordable rates and terms for modest housing.

The Guaranteed loan program provides homeownership loans through approved lenders.  The interest rate is negotiated between the lender and applicant and is currently below 4.25%.  For the Direct loan program, loans are made directly through USDA Rural Development offices and the current interest rate is 2.875% and may be reduced to 1% for qualifying households.  Additional information on both of these programs is available at http://www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/single-family-housing-guaranteed-loan-program/ne

and http://www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/single-family-housing-direct-home-loans/ne.

In Fiscal Year 2016, USDA Rural Development assisted 994 Nebraska families with homeownership and home repairs totaling in excess of $100 million. Since 1979, USDA Rural Development has invested $1.6 billion in rural Nebraska for homeownership opportunities and repairs.

Eligibility for both housing programs is based on income, acceptable credit and repayment ability and the property must be located in rural areas. All communities in Nebraska are eligible for housing programs with the exceptions of Fremont, Grand Island, Hastings, Kearney, Lincoln, North Platte, Omaha and South Sioux City/Dakota City.  See http://eligibility.sc.egov.usda.gov/eligibility/welcomeAction.do for eligible areas to determine if you are within the established income limit based on the size of household and county and if the property is located within an eligible area.  USDA uses sound underwriting criteria to ensure borrowers are able to repay their loans.  By doing so, USDA Rural Development is helping to keep people in their homes.

Edrissa and Daniela Jallow rented a house in Scottsbluff, Nebraska.  One day they were notified of a rent increase which made them think that it might be time to buy a home. The couple talked about how much money they’d already spent on rent and how they wouldn’t have much to show for it after moving out.  They were put in contact with Marlene Butcher of Valley Bank and Trust who was very helpful in making their purchase and determined the amount that the Jallows could afford.

The Jallows’ best option would be an USDA Rural Development Guaranteed (USDA)/Nebraska Investment Finance Authority (NIFA) loan as it provided first time home buyers the opportunity to buy a home with no down payment.  When the Jallows found “the home” it was out of their price range.  Western Nebraska Housing Opportunities (WNHO) helped with some of the closing costs.  Daniela’s parents gifted the remaining closing costs to the couple, to help them get the house of their dreams.  They were very proud of the young couple and wanted to help provide them with an opportunity they might never have otherwise.

Harriett is an 87 year old single female living on a limited, fixed income.  She owns an 808 sq. ft. home built in 1935 that had been in the family for many years.  Harriett had trouble with her sewer line and it was between her house and the city main.  Harriett was told that it was her responsibility to complete the repairs. Since she did not have the funds for these repairs, she did the best that she could. For months, she was very careful not to put any paper in her toilet, and frequently took her showers at friends/neighbors. USDA Rural Development was able to help with grant funds to install a new sewer line from the house to the city connection.

 

The Multi-Family Housing (MFH) program provides financing to develop rental housing in rural areas for persons with very-low, low and moderate incomes.  Funds are also available to construct a new facility or to rehabilitate Rural Development financed apartments or convert existing buildings into apartments.  More than $46,000 will repair homes for the Winnebago Tribe Seniors in Winnebago, Nebraska. Nebraska has 195 rental complexes financed through Rural Development that provide 3,139 affordable rental units.

Subsidies are available to lower a tenant’s monthly contribution in order to make rent more affordable.  In the 2016 fiscal year, nearly $8.7 million of rental assistance and vouchers were provided to 2,422 tenants residing in Rural Development multi-family rural rental housing complexes in Nebraska.  To locate a rural rental housing complex nearest you visit: http://rdmfhrentals.sc.egov.usda.gov/RDMFHRentals/select_state.jsp.

For more information contact the Rural Development office nearest you.  You can locate an office by visiting:  http://www.rd.usda.gov/contact-us/state-offices/ne.

Visit http://www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/all-programs for information on all of Rural Development’s programs

President Obama’s plan for rural America has brought about historic investment and resulted in stronger rural communities. Under the President’s leadership, these investments in housing, community facilities, businesses and infrastructure have empowered rural America to continue leading the way – strengthening America’s economy, small towns and rural communities. USDA’s investments in rural communities support the rural way of life that stands as the backbone of our American values.