(10/15/12) - A federal program is helping Genesee County clean up blight, remodel old vacant homes and put them back on the market, but finding people to live in the renovated properties hasn't been easy.
Crews from the Genesee County Land Bank are in the process of an extreme home makeover on First Avenue in Flint. Next door sits a property they've already finished, it looks like new, but no one lives in it. A few blocks away on University Avenue, the same story, a remodeled, like new, but empty house. The homes are among several dozen across Genesee County that were once considered eyesores. Federal Grants from the Neighborhood Stabilization Program or NSP provided the funds to fix them up. Now comes a bigger challenge finding qualified buyers.
"Lots of people inquire," said Theresa Allen, a broker for Royal Realty.
She says the problem is most interested buyers have low credit scores. Under NSP guidelines buyers must have decent credit, they cannot currently own property, and they must attend at least eight hours of home owner counseling. Theresa believes there are people in the Genesee County area that meet these standards.
"Maybe some person has a minimum wage job, but they haven't extended themselves and their credit is good, they can call us and we can make them become homeowners."
And turn the empty houses into happy homes.
To learn more about the NSP program, or about purchasing one of the remodeled homes, click HERE.
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