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News: Program - Bar-None Housing

gothenburg2.jpg
Workers from Stahla Mobile Homes of North Platte peel off
shipping plastic in preparation to finish two modular homes
in Brady that were installed last week. The homes will be
sold to low-income elderly and/or disabled buyers.

Housing project yields results

(3/26/2003)

by Mike Wendorff

Two 990-square-foot modular homes were set on their foundations last week on lots in Brady.

The homes will be offered for sale to low-income elderly or disabled people. It culminates a long effort by the Village of Brady and the Lincoln County Community Development Center (LCCDC).

LCCDC director Nancy Striebel said the homes were built by minimum security prisoners jailed with the Nebraska Department of Corrections through Bar-None, a project of the Nebraska Investment Finance Authority to provide affordable housing across the state.

"There are a lot of these homes in eastern Nebraska but this is as far west as they have ever come," Striebel said.

The single-family houses have two bedrooms and one bath and will be sold for $70,000 each with attractive terms. Striebel said they are targeting low-income buyers.

Bar-None is offering a 30-year mortgage at 1/2% interest with assistance for down payment and closing costs up to $4,000 to qualified buyers. That adds up to less than $200 a month, she said.

First-time buyers can also finance through USDA or NIFA.

"We hope it will give folks a chance to own a home and to have something stable," Striebel said.

She said LCCDC has been working with Sutherland, Maxwell and Brady to obtain and use Housing and Urban Development funds for the housing projects.

"It was Brady who stepped up to the plate," Striebel said. "Brady donated the lot for the project."

The lot had to be subdivided to accommodate the two homes. Once two car ports and a retaining wall are installed, it won't leave much room for yard. She said this should be a plus because the elderly and disabled may not want to care for a large yard.

Striebel said the original project called for a rental duplex which would have taken up the entire lot with one building. Funding specifications changed to homes for ownership hence the zoning adjustment on the lot.

She said there has been some interest in the new homes already. She said potential buyers must meet the income, age and/or disability guidelines. The potential buyer must attend a six-hour home-buyers education class conducted by Striebel and fill out an application.

This project is part of a long-term effort by the Village of Brady to construct new homes to facilitate growth. New housing is needed to make room for an expected influx of new residents as a result of the 600 new employees expected to work at the Walmart Distribution Center in North Platte.

Village clerk Michelle Blagdon said the village plans to have eight new homes either built or started by the end of the summer. She said they receive almost daily inquiries from people seeking housing.

Striebel said questions about the homes may be directed to village officials. For more specific inquiries, call Striebel at (308) 534-5095.

Originally printed in The Gothenburg Times on March 26, 2003. Reprinted with permission.

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