Interfaith Housing Alliance (IHA) began operating under the Self-Help Purchase Repair model a few years ago, and has had much success providing homeownership opportunities to people near the Frederick County by helping families purchase homes that are available for sale, but are in need of repair. With the guidance of the organization, the participant family assists in the repair of the home. This helps them to save money. The community also benefits by having these homes taken off the market that have been difficult to sell.
The Benefits of the Program
This program makes it easier to afford a “fixer-upper” and do the needed repairs. When a home is purchased with conventional financing, it is not possible to get loan funds for repairs and most low income applicants don’t have enough savings to make the needed updates. The housing director for IHA says the Self-Help Purchase Repair program has become a great option to offer their clients.
Tom is a middle school History teacher in the Frederick area. He had been looking for homes for awhile. He didn’t mind putting in the work necessary to complete the repairs and updates to his home; so far he has put in over 250 hours. He was able to make his home more energy efficient by replacing old window air conditioning units with an oil heater with energy efficient mechanicals. Not only is Tom happy about his new responsibility, “Because of this program, I had to go to homebuyer education classes. So, I feel better off because of IHA and its resources.”