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2007-10-11 17:43:00

HUD Awards 'Sweat Equity Grants' to Self-Help Housing Developers

Dallas, TX, Oct. 11, 2007 -- More than a thousand low-income families will become homeowners for the first time thanks to their own labor and $18.7 million in funding announced today by Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson. Jackson made the announcement to the annual conference of Habitat for Humanity International in Dallas and said HUD's investment builds on the sweat equity the families themselves contribute.

"HUD and organizations like Habitat are working side-by-side with families to make their American Dream come true," said Jackson. "With a little help from HUD, these families are using their own elbow grease to create a place they can call home and to build a future where they own a stake in their own communities."

The grants announced today are provided through HUD's Self-Help Homeownership Opportunity Program (SHOP). The following nonprofit organizations are receiving grants:

Recipient

Amount

Habitat for Humanity International

 $8,404,670

Housing Assistance Council

 $5,229,572

Community Frameworks

$2,801,556

PPEP Microbusiness & Housing Development Corp.

 $2,241,245

Total

 $18,677,043


SHOP grants are provided to national and regional nonprofit organizations that have experience in providing self-help housing. These funds are used to purchase land and install or improve infrastructure, which together may not exceed an average investment of $15,000 per dwelling. These non-profit organizations propose to distribute SHOP funds to several hundred local affiliates that will acquire the land, select homebuyers, coordinate the homebuyer sweat equity and volunteer efforts, and assist in the arrangement of interim and permanent financing for the homebuyers.

Homebuyers contribute a minimum of 100 hours of sweat equity on the construction of their homes and/or the homes of other homebuyers participating in the local self-help housing program. Self-help housing or sweat equity involves the homebuyer's participation in the construction of the housing, which can include, but is not limited to, assisting in the painting, carpentry, trim work, drywall, roofing and siding for the housing.

Labor contributed by volunteers also helps buyers who are unable to perform their sweat equity tasks due to disabilities or other reasons. Frequently persons with disabilities are able to substitute tasks by performing administrative tasks. The sweat equity and labor contributions by the homebuyers and volunteers significantly reduce the cost of the housing.

FY 2007 SHOP Awards

Habitat for Humanity International                              $ 8,404,670

Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI) is a national nonprofit organization that will use SHOP funds in rural, metropolitan, and urban areas to facilitate and encourage innovative homeownership opportunities through the provision of self-help housing.  SHOP funds will be used to purchase land and make necessary infrastructure improvements, primarily in support of new construction.  A portion of the SHOP award will be used for administration, planning, and management development.  Local affiliates will compete for SHOP funding from HFHI on a national basis.  Completed properties will be transferred to homebuyers who contribute a significant amount of sweat equity, in addition to other volunteer labor, toward the construction of the unit.  HFHI will produce a minimum of 509 housing units.   Contact: Elizabeth Blake, (404) 962-3403. 

Housing Assistance Council                                        $5,229,572

Housing Assistance Council (HAC) is a national nonprofit organization that will use SHOP funds in primarily rural areas for land acquisition, infrastructure improvements, and administration that support new construction.  Local organizations developing self-help housing will compete for SHOP funding from HAC on a regional basis in order to achieve a national distribution of funds.  Each local organization is permitted to custom design how it will use the funds in compliance with SHOP requirements.  Completed properties are sold to homebuyers who contribute a significant amount of sweat equity toward the construction of the unit, in addition to other volunteer labor.  HAC will produce a minimum of 317 housing units.  Contact:  Mr. Moises Loza, (202) 842-8600.

Community Frameworks                                              $2,801,556

Community Frameworks is a regional nonprofit organization serving the states of Washington, Idaho, Oregon, and Montana.  SHOP funds will be used by Community Frameworks and 25 local participating affiliates to buy land and make necessary infrastructure improvements that support new construction and rehabilitation.  A portion of this SHOP award will be used for administration, planning and management development.  Each local organization is permitted to custom design how it will use the funds in compliance with SHOP requirements.  Completed properties are sold to low-income homebuyers who contribute a significant amount of sweat equity toward the construction of the unit, in addition to other volunteer labor.  Community Frameworks will produce a minimum of 163 housing units.   Contact:  Linda Hugo, (360) 377-7738. 

PPEP Microbusiness & Housing Development Corp.         $2,241,245

PPEP Microbusiness and Housing Development Corporation (PPEP) is the lead agency for the Rocky Mountain/Hi Coalition Consortium, a regional consortium.  The Consortium will use SHOP funds in rural areas for land acquisition, infrastructure improvements and administration that support the development of self-help housing in Arizona, Colorado, and New Mexico.  Consortium members will provide funds to local affiliates.  Each local organization is permitted to design its program in compliance with SHOP requirements.  The homebuyer must contribute a significant amount of sweat equity toward the construction of the house.  The Consortium will produce a minimum of 126 housing units.  Contact:  Dr. John Arnold, (502) 889-4203.

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