Gray, Public Affairs Officer
400 State Ave., Kansas City, KS 66101-2406
Phone: (913) 551-5542 / (913) 551-5469
June 30, 2005
HUD official recognizes first-time home buyer
and praises local homeownership programs
June is designated National Homeownership Month
WICHITA, KS - U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Regional Director Macie Houston today
joined local housing officials to recognize first-time homebuyer Staci Everett. Everett stood proudly in front of her
new home at 2631 North Minnesota Court in the MillAir Creek subdivision and accepted the "key to homeownership" from Houston. President Bush has proclaimed June as National Homeownership Month and Houston, along with local housing officials, recognized the month-long celebration today in Wichita with a "Welcome to Homeownership" celebration.
"June is National Homeownership Month and what better way to mark the occasion than to help individuals like Staci realize the American Dream," said Houston. "Today we open one door but across the nation, we have joined forces with private and nonprofit organizations in a collaborative effort to increase homeownership, particularly among minorities, by 5.5 million, by the year 2010."
Everett stated she was thrilled to have this opportunity and thanked everyone who was involved in making it happen for her and her three sons. The three-bedroom house was purchased for $81,600 utilizing the City's HOMEownership 80 program that provides down payment assistance and is funded with Home Investment Partnerships Program (HOME) funds received from HUD. Executive Mortgage Group financed Everett's mortgage loan and Gold Key Realtor Vesta Florence worked with Everett to educate her on the homebuying process and to "close the deal".
In addition to the "Welcome to Homeownership" celebration, Houston praised the city for its homeownership initiatives that are helping lower income families purchase homes. Wichita was one of 20 state and local governments around the country to be awarded HUD's prestigious "Doorknocker Award" in 2004 for the MillAir Creek development which provides affordable housing to low-income and underserved people.
Wichita's Homeownership Housing Program (MillAir Creek) demonstrates the implementation of a homeownership program by a grassroots organization, Power CDC, Inc. and city government. To implement MillAir Creek, developer Power CDC worked with the City of Wichita's Housing and Community Services Department and received development subsidies through the HOME program. In addition, Commercial Federal Bank provided Construction Financing; the Housing Authority of Wichita provided assistance through its Section 8 Housing Homeownership Program; and, first mortgage financing was provided through the Heart of Wichita Lender Pool and other local lenders. The 53 new single-family homes that will make up the MillAir Creek subdivision when it is completed will increase both affordable housing opportunities and the number
of homeowners in the community.
HUD is the nation's housing agency committed to increasing homeownership, particularly among minorities, creating affordable housing opportunities for low-income Americans, supporting the homeless, elderly, people with disabilities and people living with AIDS. The Department also promotes economic and community development as well as
enforces the nation's fair housing laws. More information about HUD and its programs, including new and existing homeownership initiatives, is available on the Internet.