Pemi-Valley Habitat for Humanity Breaks Ground with Help of New Hampshire Housing

From left: Brian McCarthy, Executive Director, Pemi-Valley Habitat for Humanity; Kate Ransom, President, Pemi-Valley Habitat for Humanity; new homeowner; Ignatius MacLellan, Managing Director, Homeownership, New Hampshire Housing

From left: Brian McCarthy, Executive Director, Pemi-Valley Habitat for Humanity; Kate Ransom, President, Pemi-Valley Habitat for Humanity; new homeowner; Ignatius MacLellan, Managing Director, Homeownership, New Hampshire Housing

Pemi-Valley Habitat for Humanity is turning what was once a plot of steep, difficult land in Bristol into a neighborhood of affordable housing, thanks in part to a program with New Hampshire Housing. The partnership is part of a larger collaboration between Habitat for Humanity affiliates statewide and New Hampshire Housing that is helping low-income families realize their dreams of homeownership.

Habitat for Humanity is an international nonprofit that works to strengthen families and communities through affordable homeownership opportunities. For almost ten years, New Hampshire Housing has helped Habitat affiliates through loans to families and, in the case of Pemi-Valley Habitat, assistance with securing land for projects.

New Hampshire Housing owned the plot of land in Bristol but was unable to sell it to Pemi-Valley Habitat until the first home in the development was completed and sold. Pemi-Valley secured a rare Community Development Finance Authority grant while they leased the land at a low rate from New Hampshire Housing. They used this grant to prepare the land so they could begin work on their vision of an affordable, four-house neighborhood. This past May, the first home in the development was sold and Habitat was able purchase the land.

Families who participate in Habitat’s program can apply for up to $15,000 from New Hampshire Housing for a no interest, no payment downpayment loan. Since Habitat selects families far in advance of a home’s closing, families have time to work with both Habitat and New Hampshire Housing on financial fitness and learning the responsibilities of homeownership.

The downpayment also benefits the Habitat affiliate by acting as seed money. The $15,000 from New Hampshire Housing is viewed as an investment in the project and can then be leveraged to help obtain other grants and funding.

Since the program’s beginning in 2004, 39 families have used New Hampshire Housing’s Habitat loans, and four more loans are currently in the works. Thirteen Habitat affiliates participate.

Families interested in working with Habitat for Humanity and applying for a New Hampshire Housing loan should contact their local Habitat affiliate for information.

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