LETTER TO THE EDITOR: USDA Program helps preserve pride in homes

Some say the electric feeling of buying and moving into your own home never wears off. When you own the floors you’re standing on, the walls surrounding you and the roof over your head, you also own great satisfaction from the hard work that resulted in your home becoming yours.

Yet, just as it was hard work to achieve the American Dream of homeownership, being responsible for maintaining and, inevitably, repairing your own home can be just as much hard work. USDA Rural Development’s Home Repair Program is an affordable way to keep your home safe, accessible and energy-efficient.

The program provides very-low-income rural homeowners with a 1-percent-interest fixed-rate loan of up to $20,000 for essential things like leaky-roof repairs, improving accessibility, or even upgrades to heating and cooling systems to make a home more energy-efficient. Seniors age 62 and older, who cannot qualify for a loan, may be eligible for a grant of up to $7,500, or a loan and grant combination to make needed repairs and improvements.

Since 2009, 55 Delaware homeowners were assisted by the Home Repair Program. Delaware rural homeowners were able to make necessary improvements to their homes they did not realize they could afford.

Some installed new smoke and carbon-monoxide detectors or replaced old insulation. Some widened doors and added ramps. More importantly, these Delawareans renewed the pride they felt the day they bought and moved into their own homes.

One family from Sussex County discovered they were able to repair their sagging floors with a 504 home-repair grant. They worked with the Delaware State Office to make it happen, and you can, too.

Being a homeowner is hard work and a big responsibility, but you have a partner who wants you to succeed. USDA Rural Development wants to keep rural American homes safe, accessible and energy-efficient. We also want to help homeowners preserve the pride in their homes. To learn more, visit www.rd.usda.gov/de or call 857-3595.

Tony Hernandez
Rural Housing Service Administrator
William McGowan
Delaware State Director

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