BVCA offering Fairbury-specific housing program

FAIRBURY, NE — A new program is making it easier for low-income people to buy a house in Fairbury.

Blue Valley Community Action Partnership is pushing its new Purchase, Rehab, Lease, Purchase program. It helps people become homeowners if they choose a house in Fairbury that costs less than $100,000 and can be brought up to state rehabilitation standards.

“We will buy it for them and then we will rehabilitate the home as well. Rehabilitation focuses largely on safety and energy efficiency," Schwartz said. 

Grant Development Officer Ben Schwartz says he doesn’t know of any program like this in the state. BVCA received funding from the state economic development office and got matching funds from the city. It leases the house to the participant for two years and puts some of the rent money into a down payment fund.

“Our data shows (people) can swing a mortgage and could swing homeowners insurance, but may not ever be able to build up a fund big enough to put a down payment on a house,” Schwartz said. 

After two years, BVCA sells the house to the participant. One person is already in the program, which is built to buy at least four houses.

Schwartz says the program doesn’t just benefit the buyer, it helps the community.

“When you have residents who are invested and they own something, then that promotes more pride of place than renting a home," Schwartz said. 

You can call BVCA to get signed up for the Purchase, Rehab, Lease, Purchase program.