Housing Assistance Corporation Blog

Ideal East Falmouth Location

Posted by HAC Staff on Sun, Feb 18, 2018 @ 07:11 AM

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Enjoy first-floor living in this one-bedroom, one-bath condo at 110 Altons Lane, Unit 10B. The unit has recently been updated and includes a gas fireplace, hardwood floors, a new kitchen with granite countertops, and a stainless steel appliance package. 

This condo is centrally located, a short drive from Mashpee Commons, downtown Falmouth and nearby beaches. It is currently listed at $159,947, which comes with a deed restriction, and a condo fee of $360 per month.

Those interested must be first-time homebuyers, with some exceptions; earn at or below 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI) for Barnstable County; and have no more than $75,000 in household assets. Click this link to apply. 

Our real estate department, Cape Community Real Estate, has several additional affordable listings, from Mashpee to Wellfleet, which you can find by clicking here.

If you have questions about this or any other property, contact HAC Real Estate Assistant Betsie Rumbaugh at brumbaugh@haconcapecod.org or at 508-771-5400, ext. 285. 

Tags: Cape Community Real Estate, Nonprofit Real Estate, Falmouth, real estate listings, affordable homeownership, first-time homebuyer

Sachem's Path Now Complete

Posted by Chris Kazarian on Wed, Jan 17, 2018 @ 04:38 PM

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Earlier this month, HAC’s Housing Development Director Sandy Horvitz will attend a Homeowners Association meeting for Sachem’s Path, effectively concluding HAC’s role in the Nantucket project which saw the agency build 37 affordable homes for the island’s workforce on 10 acres of land off Surfside Road.

All 37 houses have been constructed and the final residents moved into their new homes just prior to Christmas. “I get emails from them [the homeowners] all the time saying, ‘This is the best thing that ever happened’ and ‘I can’t thank you enough,’” Horvitz said. “It is really heartwarming. It is one of those things that makes doing this job kind of fun, in a sense. There’s a reward you get when people are that excited.”

The project has been more than 30 years in the making. In 1985, Islanders voted to give the land to the Nantucket Housing Authority for the purpose of developing affordable housing. In 2011, the housing authority selected HAC to oversee the neighborhood project; construction began three years later.

“It’s been a very long road to see Sachem’s Path come to its completion. It’s a very proud moment for all of us who participated in its success and have seen it through to fruition. That includes HAC, the Nantucket Housing Authority, and the community at large which voted to be a major donor for the project,” Nantucket Housing Authority Director Renee Ceely said. “The real winners are the wonderful families who are now homeowners who thought owning a home was an impossible dream that actually came true.”

Learn more about Sachem's Path and those who have benefited from the project by clicking this link

Affordable Rentals in Bourne

Now that Sachem’s Path is complete, HAC and the Preservation of Affordable Housing (POAH) are in the midst of constructing 44 low-income and workforce apartments in Bourne. When finished next fall, those apartments will be added to the 73 that have already been built as part of the three-phased project known as Canal Bluffs.

Last July, HAC and POAH kicked off the third phase of Canal Bluffs with a groundbreaking ceremony. You can read about that event here.

Tags: Nantucket, Bourne, Affordable Development on Cape Cod, Affordable Housing Development on Cape Cod, Sachems Path, Sandy Horvitz, Canal Bluffs, Housing Development, affordable homeownership, Renee Ceely

HAC's Down Payment Program Helps Working Family

Posted by Chris Kazarian on Wed, Dec 27, 2017 @ 04:06 PM
Lashaunda Shepherd-1.jpgThanks to HAC's support, Lashaunda Shepherd was able to spend the holidays with her husband and their two children in a new home.

The Down Payment and Closing Cost Program that HAC administers for Barnstable County is one of the region’s best kept secrets—but it shouldn’t be!

The program uses federal funds to help income-eligible residents become first-time homeowners.

This year, seven HAC clients have been helped through the program, including Lashaunda and Martin Shepherd, a married couple who between them are working four jobs in order to make a living on Cape Cod.

Lashaunda is a rural postal carrier and a certified nursing assistant for two health care agencies and Martin is employed as a floor technician at a local nursing home.

In October, HAC was able to help the couple, who have two children, land the home of their dreams in Hyannis thanks to $5,000 they received from the agency’s Down Payment and Closing Cost Program.

The Shepherds worked closely with HAC Housing Counselor Karin Bar who helps manage the federally-funded program, which provides financial support to income-eligible residents looking to become first-time homeowners, on behalf of Barnstable County.

Without that financial assistance, Lashaunda said. “I don’t think we would have purchased a home… That was a pretty big lifesaver for us.”

The program gives leverage to those like the Shepherds, who had been renting a home in Brewster for the past four years, so they can become homeowners. That is something which has become increasingly difficult in today’s strong housing market. “It is really tough for first-time homebuyers right now,” said Bar.

Still, HAC has been able to assist seven clients this year who have been able to make their dreams of homeownership become a reality. Bar is working with another two currently.

Bar was pleased to see that the Shepherds, who both took HAC’s first-time homebuyer class earlier this year, were among those to benefit from the program.

Now the Shepherds have a home of their own which, “means a lot. It means happiness. It means in the years to come my family can come visit,” said Lashaunda, who is from South Carolina and whose husband is from Jamaica.

Though not originally from here, the Shepherds are proud to call Cape Cod their home “Since I moved here I feel like I’ve been on the right path,” Lashaunda said. “I feel like this would be a perfect place to raise a family. The schools are great. The jobs are great. We are very comfortable here… We love it here on the Cape.”

To learn more about HAC’s Down Payment and Closing Cost Program, click this link.

 

Tags: HCEC, homeowner, homeownership, Karin Bar, Barnstable County HOME Program, First-Time Homebuyer workshop, Down Payment and Closing Cost Assistance Program, affordable homeownership, Hyannis

Preparing Residents to Become Homeowners on Cape Cod

Posted by Chris Kazarian on Thu, Nov 02, 2017 @ 03:12 PM
Homebuyer17-3.jpgHAC Housing Counselor Karin Bar teaches a First-Time Homebuyer workshop in September. The classes are offered in four-day or two-day sessions as well as online for those unable to attend in person. 

On the last Thursday of September, 36 people sat quietly in the conference room at HAC’s office at 460 West Main Street in Hyannis.

Individually, they may have been different, but they all shared at least two similarities – they each rent a home or an apartment on Cape Cod. And they all hope to one day become a homeowner.

On this night, HAC Housing Counselor Karin Bar provided guidance on how they can achieve those dreams as part of the agency’s First-Time Homebuyer Workshop. HAC offers the class eight times a year; in 2016, 282 people, representing 196 households, took the class to prepare them for the home buying process.

“They are always full and in demand,” said Bar, who has been teaching the classes for the past three years.

There are a number of reasons people take the classes. Certain loan programs, including those offered by MassHousing, Fannie Mae, Massachusetts Housing Partnership, and the United States Department of Agriculture, require it.

“To get down payment assistance, it’s a requirement,” Bar added.

It’s also necessary for anyone who wants to purchase an affordable or deed-restricted home.

Homebuyer17-1.jpgJohn Hughes (left) of Falmouth and Ernesto Garcia of South Yarmouth review materials during a First-Time Homebuyer workshop held in October. 

Topics covered during the workshop include budgeting, credit, and loan programs available to homebuyers. Clients also have access to local experts, from Realtors to real estate attorneys to insurance agents to home inspectors, who walk students through each step one must take to fulfill the American dream.

“I think this program is a great tool for when you’re ready to buy a home,” said John Hughes of Falmouth, a financial specialist with the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe’s Gaming Commission. He had originally taken the course in 2015 and was back for the course in September so he could maintain his certification to keep him eligible for loan programs aimed at first-time homebuyers.

As to why he wants to become a homeowner, he said, “for stability.”

Ernesto Garcia, who rents an apartment with his fiancée in South Yarmouth, is less sure about purchasing a home, but the classes helped clarify the process. “If you have any doubts, what they teach makes it clearer,” he said.

Wanting to become a homeowner is one of the biggest decisions people will make in their lives. HAC’s First-Time Homebuyer workshop is aimed at not only taking the stress out of the equation, but making it enjoyable for participants.

“This is like the maternity ward… This is fun. People are excited and thinking about buying a house,” Bar said of the workshop. “At the end of every class series, we have people fill out an evaluation form and there has never been anyone who says it wasn’t worth it.”

Register for HAC's First-Time Homebuyer Workshop

Those interested in signing up for a First-Time Homebuyer class can do so by clicking this link. HAC also offers a number of other financial literacy classes including Rebuilding Your Credit; Budgeting; Be a Successful Tenant; Community Resources; and Home Forever. Click here to see a full class listing offered by HAC.  

Tags: HCEC, Homebuyer Education, homeownership, Karin Bar, housing consumer education, First-Time Homebuyer workshop, affordable homeownership, first-time homebuyer

Choose Your Own Affordable Home in Yarmouth

Posted by Chris Kazarian on Wed, Oct 25, 2017 @ 01:46 PM

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With housing at a premium, becoming a homeowner on Cape Cod continues to be difficult for low- to middle-income wage earners. In Yarmouth, a handful of residents will have an opportunity to achieve that dream through a buydown program HAC is administering for the town.

The program will enable 4 residents to purchase a market rate home at an affordable price. “Inventory has gotten really expensive so a buyer could find a market rate property priced at $289,000 and buy it at $189,000 with a deed restriction,” said Gael Kelleher, HAC’s director of Cape Community Real Estate. “It is the best deal in town. You can’t beat it.”

Qualified applicants must be first-time homebuyers (some exceptions apply), earn 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI) for Barnstable County, and have no more than $75,000 in household assets. To participate in the program, residents must fill out an application and return it to HAC’s offices at 460 West Main Street by Friday, November 17 by 5 pm.

Applications are available at HAC; Yarmouth Town Hall at 1146 Route 28; Yarmouth Housing Authority at 534 Winslow Gray Road; and all Yarmouth public libraries.

Winners will be selected by lottery and will receive a buydown of 35% of the purchase price of a market rate home of their choice, up to $100,000. The following are maximum prices of homes that can be purchased in Yarmouth through this program: $339,000 (four bedroom); $319,000 (three bedroom); $295,000 (two bedroom); and $273,000 (one bedroom).

Any house purchased through the program will be recorded and deed restricted as affordable.

Contact HAC Real Estate Assistant Betsie Rumbaugh at ccre@haconcapecod.org or 508-771-5400, ext. 285 for more information on the Yarmouth Buydown Program.

Tags: Gael Kelleher, Cape Community Real Estate, homeownership, affordable homeownership, Yarmouth Buydown Program, Yarmouth

Affordable Condo in Mashpee

Posted by HAC Staff on Fri, Oct 06, 2017 @ 12:17 PM

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Call this 1-bedroom, 1-bath condominium yours for only $169,000. Located in a quaint, quiet neighborhood in Main Street Village, this condo is in a four-unit building on the upper level.

The condo, which comes with a resale restriction, has two deeded parking spaces, a detached garage, ample basement and closet space, and gas-forced hot water heat.

Eligible applicants must be first-time homebuyers. Incomes may not exceed 120% of the Area Median Income (AMI) for Barnstable County which is equivalent to $75,800 for a one-person household and $86,600 for a two-person household. Household assets must be less than $75,000.

Click here to download an application for this home. And click here to see more affordable homes for sale on Cape Cod. If you have questions about this or other homes, contact HAC Real Estate Assistant Betsie Rumbaugh at ccre@haconcapecod.org or 508-771-5400, ext. 285.

Tags: Affordable Housing on Cape Cod, Cape Community Real Estate, Mashpee, homeownership, Betsie Rumbaugh, affordable homeownership, first-time homebuyer