USDA Rural Development funding available for home purchase, repairs
USDA Rural Development loan and grant funding is available for individuals and communities across the state. Eligible homeowners may use funds to finance essential home repairs, including the construction of storm shelters. Loans to communities and other eligible entities may be used to finance a variety of public use projects, including tornado sirens and other community needs.
USDA Rural Development offers a variety of programs to provide financing to individuals and communities. The Agency’s Single Family Home Repair Loan & Grant Program can finance improvements to a home to remove health and safety hazards, including the construction of storm shelters for owner-occupied residences. For small cities and other rural communities in Kansas, the Agency’s Community Facilities Program finances essential community needs, including hospitals, day care centers, fire trucks and equipment, storm sirens and a wide variety of other public use facilities and equipment.
Personal safety concerns for rural residents have contributed to Agency approval for use of the home repair funds to construct storm shelters or safe rooms in owner occupied dwellings. In Addition, other necessary repairs and improvements such as: the installation of windows and insulation to improve energy efficiency; installation of heating/cooling systems; roofing, siding, ceiling and flooring repairs; replacement or installation of water and waste disposal systems, and improvements for handicapped accessibility may also be financed under the Single Family Home Repair Program. Applicants must meet income guidelines and be owner occupants of the rural property being improved.
State Director Patty Clark commented, “Severe weather can strike unexpectedly, often resulting in serious personal consequences. Violent storms and the loss of life underscore the need for improved safety measures. The installation of a storm shelter in a home or storm sirens in a community offer important added safety and security whenever severe weather approaches. USDA Rural Development is able to provide homeowners and entire communities with the resources to protect themselves and their families.”
In addition to repair funds for improving private homes, the Agency’s Community Facilities Program is a great tool to assist rural communities to develop new or enhanced facilities for public safety, public service and health care. Projects can include: schools; libraries; courthouses; childcare facilities; hospitals and medical clinics; assisted living facilities; installation of storm sirens; police and fire equipment, vehicles and rescue facilities; public buildings; and transportation needs. Through the Agency’s Community Facilities Program, USDA Rural Development is striving to ensure that such facilities are readily available to all rural communities. Community Facilities Programs utilize three financial tools to achieve this goal: the Guaranteed Loan Program, the Direct Loan Program, and the Grant Program.
“The benefits of the program through low-interest loans can significantly improve the quality of life for community residents,” commented State Director Clark.
As defined for the Community Facilities Program, a rural area may be any city, town or unincorporated area with a population of 20,000 or less, other than an urbanized area. Public bodies such as cities and counties, nonprofit corporations, and federally recognized Indian Tribes may be eligible applicants for the Community Facilities Program.
USDA Rural Development’s mission is to deliver programs in a way that will support increasing economic opportunity and improve the quality of life of rural residents. The Agency provides equity and technical assistance to finance and foster growth in homeownership, business development, and critical community and technology infrastructure in rural America. For additional information regarding all USDA Rural Development programs, contact the Agency at 785-271-2700 or visit the Agency’s Kansas website at www.rurdev.usda.gov/ks.