NEW LEXINGTON — Due to the high need for minor repairs and home improvement projects on owner-occupied homes, Habitat for Humanity of Southeast Ohio will be piloting a “Microfinance” program for residents of Southeast Ohio.

The Microfinance program is being created to address the need for small repairs or improvements to an aging housing stock in Southeast Ohio. The program is designed to help families with needed updates or repairs on their homes and preserve or improve the quality of living for homeowners in Southeast Ohio. Funding for the program is being provided by United Way of Muskingum, Perry and Morgan counties.

The program will address housing needs such as flooring replacement, wheelchair ramp purchase, window and door upgrades/replacements, appliance repair/replacement, bathroom upgrades, and much more. Both exterior and interior repairs will be considered under the program. The financial cap per project will be $1,500 and must be repaid via a zero-interest mortgage within one year.

“This program will provide much needed capital to improve the housing situations for residents of Southeast Ohio” says Kenneth Oehlers, Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity of Southeast Ohio. “HFHSEO has designed this program to provide affordable loans so that families can improve and maintain their homes and their quality of life without seeking out payday or high-interest predatory loans.”

The Microfinance program has an expanded income requirement and other requirements similar to the current HFHSEO homeownership program. Basic qualifications include an income between 20-80 percent of the Area Median Income, must own home and property, and a requirement to pay a zero-interest loan payment back to Habitat. Information on the requirements can be found on the Habitat website.

For more information on the Microfinance Program, visit www.habitatseo.org or call 740-592-0032 ext. 109. The pre-application for the program is currently on the Habitat for Humanity of Southeast Ohio website. Pre-Applications will only be accepted from people who live in the counties served by our affiliate. Applications will be e-mailed (or mailed) once HFHSEO receives a pre-application online.

To get involved with Habitat for Humanity of Southeast Ohio or to make a donation, please call 740-592-0032 or visit our website, www.habitatseo.org.

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