CHICAGO –Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today announced eight community organizations across the state will receive American Dream Downpayment Initiative (ADDI) grants totaling more than $1million to help 115 families purchase their first homes. The grants, approved at the July meeting of the Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) Board of Directors, will provide downpayment assistance for homeowners in the counties of Rock Island, Logan, Menard, Sangamon, Christian, Macoupin, Montgomery, McLean, Henry, Mercer, Adams, St. Clair, Macon and Will.
“Owning a home is something every family wants. Being a homeowner gives you stability, security and pride. But with today’s housing prices, many working families can’t afford the downpayment,” said Gov. Blagojevich. “Our American Dream Downpayment Initiative will help working families and individuals afford safe and decent homes, build equity and provide a better financial future for their children.”
Because of high housing prices, coming up with the downpayment for a home puts homeownership out of reach for many hard working people in Illinois. Increasing homeownership opportunities for moderate-income individuals and families is a priority of the Governor’s Building for Success: Illinois’ Comprehensive Housing Plan.
Through the Governor’s ADDI program, low-income households can qualify for a five-year forgivable loan of up to $10,000 or up to six percent of the home’s purchase price, not to exceed $14,999. Homeownership becomes an affordable option for low-income households when they use the loan to cover the downpayment cost. The loan is forgiven at a rate of 1/60th per month and is completely forgiven after five years.
“The forgivable loans available through the American Dream Downpayment Initiative will help more Illinois households own safe, affordable homes and reap the social and financial benefits of homeownership,” said Kelly King Dibble, IHDA Executive Director. “I am delighted to work with such committed community partners to make homeownership a viable option for Illinoisans. Affordable housing increases family and community stability, provides jobs and economic growth through the housing industry, and gives Illinois a competitive edge in attracting investment, which generates a larger local and state tax base and improves Illinois’ overall fiscal health.”
To participate in the ADDI Program, families and individuals must be first-time homebuyers, make no more than 80% of the area median income, complete homebuyer counseling and contribute at least $1,000 toward the downpayment. Homebuyers may also be eligible for low interest mortgages through IHDA’s I-LOAN Mortgage Program.
Homes purchased through the ADDI Program must meet all local, state, and federal safety requirements before purchase. Detached single-family homes, condominiums and town homes may be purchased through the ADDI Program.
Midwest Regional Director of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Joseph Galvan, said, “HUD applauds IHDA’s continued dedication to decent, safe, sanitary and affordable housing for low-income families. We recognize and commend IHDA’s long history of support for homeownership programs and are grateful to have such a committed and qualified partner in the fight for affordable housing.”
IHDA administers Illinois’ ADDI Program for communities that do not receive their own HOME allocations. Since 1995, IHDA has allocated more than $25 million in federally allocated HOME funds to support homeownership programs throughout the state and help 1500 families afford a home. This is the first year ADDI funds have been available through the HOME program. Communities designated by HUD as participating jurisdictions with a population of at least 150,000 and prior commitments to homebuyer programs receive ADDI allocations directly from HUD.
“The Partnership for Homeownership has worked with IHDA for many years and we are delighted to be one of the first organizations to use the American Dream Downpayment Initiative Program,” said Beth Lewellyn, Chief Executive Officer of the Partnership for Homeownership. “With IHDA’s support, the Quincy Initiative has helped revitalize underserved communities and made homeownership an option for low and very-low income residents in Quincy. We are excited that this grant will allow us to help 20 more families achieve the American Dream of homeownership.”
A training session for approved grantees will be held on August 17, 2005 at the Renaissance Springfield Hotel. Municipalities and organizations that do not receive ADDI allocations directly from HUD and would like to apply for the spring 2006 ADDI program should contact Vanessa Hill at 312-836-7423.
City of Moline - $105,000; 10 homes
Ten Moline households who earn less than 60% of the area median income, $27,840 for a two-person household, will receive downpayment assistance to purchase their first home through the city’s homebuyer program. The program will be available first to individuals who currently reside in public housing or receive assistance from the public housing authority. For more information, contact the City of Moline at 309-797-0710.
Statewide Independent Living Council of Illinois (SILC) - $210,000; 20 homes
In Sangamon, Logan, Christian, Menard, Macoupin, and Montgomery Counties, more than 45 low-income families or individuals have purchased their first home through SILC’s Homeownership for People with Disabilities program that began in 2003. Financing from the ADDI program will help 20 more low- and very-low income households afford a safe, secure home. For more information, contact SILC at 217-744-7777.
City of Decatur - $137,340; 24 homes
The city of Decatur has helped more than 70 families and individuals purchase their first home since the Decatur Homebuyer Program’s 1996 inception. ADDI financing will help 24 first-time homebuyers become homeowners. Households who earn between 50 and 80 percent of the area median income, $21,700 to $34,750 for a two-person household, are eligible for the program. For more information, contact the City of Decatur at 217-424-2795.
Habitat for Humanity of McLean County - $63,000; 6 homes
Habitat for Humanity will construct six single-family homes in Normal. The homes will be available to households who earn less than 50 percent of the area median income, $27,850 for a two-person household. In-kind donations, volunteer labor and forgivable loans from the Federal Home Loan Bank will increase the affordability of the homes. Thirty homes have been constructed through Habitat for Humanity of McLean County since 2000. For more information, contact Habitat for Humanity of McLean County at 309-827-3931.
Project NOW, Inc - $136,500; 13 homes
Project NOW, Inc has helped 135 low- and very-low income households become homeowners since 1994. Thirteen households in Rock Island, Henry and Mercer Counties will receive downpayment assistance from the ADDI program. Project NOW, Inc., will use the ADDI funds to expand their current homebuyer program and help families transition from public rental housing to ownership of a single-family home. Project NOW will work with the Greater Metropolitan Housing Authority and the Mercer County Housing Authority to provide pre- and post-purchase homebuyer counseling in addition to the ADDI-financed downpayment assistance. For more information, contact Project NOW, Inc., at 309-793-6391.
Partnership for Homeownership - $210,000; 20 homes
The Partnership for Homeownership will help 20 Quincy first-time homebuyers purchase newly constructed homes. Since 2002, more than 35 families have purchase homes through the Partnership for Homeownership’s Quincy Initiative. ADDI financing will help 10 households who earn less than 80 percent of the area median income, $32,200 for a two-person household, and 10 households who earn less than 60 percent of the area median income, $24,120 for a two-person household, purchase their first home. For more information, contact the Partnership for Homeownership at 800-370-6697.
Housing Authority of East St. Louis - $126,000; 12 homes
The Housing Authority of East St. Louis will use the ADDI financing to help 12 very-low income households purchase the homes they currently rent form the Housing Authority of East St. Louis. Households that earn less than 50 percent of the area median income, $26,350 for a two-person household, will purchase three of the homes. Households who earn less than 30 percent of the area median income, $15,800 for a two-person household, will purchase nine of the homes. For more information, contact the Housing Authority of East St. Louis at 618-646-7165.
Housing Authority of Joliet - $105,000; 10 homes
Down payment assistance for 10 Housing Choice Voucher holders who want to purchase a home in Joliet will be available through the Housing Authority of Joliet’s Homebuyer Assistance Program. The forgivable loans will help eight families who earn less than 50% of the area median income, $30,150 for a two-person household, and two families who earn less than 30% of the area median income, $18,100 for a two-person household become homeowners. For more information, contact the Housing Authority of Joliet at 815-727-0611.
About the Illinois Housing Development Authority
The Illinois Housing Development Authority (www.ihda.org) is a self-supporting state agency that finances the creation and preservation of affordable housing across Illinois. Since its creation by an act of the Illinois legislature in 1967, IHDA has allocated more than $6.4 billion and financed more than 160,000 units of affordable housing across the state. IHDA accomplishes its mission through a number of federal and state funding sources, including the Illinois Affordable Housing Trust Fund, the Illinois Affordable Housing Tax Credits Fund, the allocation of federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits, HOME Investment Partnership funds and others. IHDA is also a bonding authority, and independently sells bonds, based on its own good credit, to finance affordable housing across the state.