HUD Funding Makes Homeownership Possible for Montana Family

The Myrtle Quincy family purchased the first NSP funded home in Montana

Myrtle Quincy, a single Native American mother from Great Falls, Montana, wanted to become a homeowner for many years. Unfortunately, her income was not enough to cover a mortgage payment. But that changed recently, due to funding from the Department of Housing and Urban Development's Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP). Through this program, NeighborWorks of Great Falls (NWGF) has been able to purchase, renovate, and re-sell homes to low-income families in Great Falls. The NSP funding was a response by Congress to the foreclosure crisis, which was hurting neighborhoods with many unoccupied homes. The NSP program is also creating jobs by putting construction workers back to work.

Ms. Quincy and her two children, Veronica age 11, and Cordell age 15, were able to move into the first house completed through this program. The foreclosed and abandoned home was purchased for $80,000, renovated at a cost of $40,000 and then sold to her using NSP funding to provide down payment assistance in the form of a deferred mortgage. In order to be eligible for the program, the family had to qualify for the first mortgage before a second mortgage would be available. In addition to NWGF, partners that made this possible were the Montana Department of Commerce, HUD and 1st Interstate Bank. To date, NWGF has purchased six homes, with four more targeted, for a total of 10 homes within the city limits that will soon be available to families who qualify for the program.

Ms. Quincy said, "We are very happy - I have been renting for years. I looked into NeighborWorks programs, went to Homebuyer Education, and then started saving my down payment through the Individual Development Account. Now my kids have a brand new house! This is a dream come true for us." She went on to say, "We were so miserable in our apartment. It was crowded and we had really bad neighbors. Now we have good neighbors and we are so happy to know that this is really ours."

Chris Imhoff, City of Great Falls CDBG administrator, said that the project is a great example of the public-private partnership that the City of Great Falls and NWGF have enjoyed for 30 years. "NSP is putting local contractors to work and adding sales to local suppliers, so it is an example of stimulus funding at work," Imhoff said.

The program is administered by the Montana Department of Commerce Community Development Block Grant Program using the money from HUD. "NSP was created by the Housing Economic Recovery Act of 2008 as a solution to the national housing foreclosure crisis. It serves as a bridge to connect homebuyers with affordably priced properties," said Anthony Preite, Director of the Montana Department of Commerce. "This house is an example of NSP's success in Montana and its important investment in Montana's economy."

Ms. Quincy couldn't agree more. "I love my house. I just love it," she said on move-in day.

NWGF is funded through contributions from community businesses and banks, grants from the City of Great Falls, HUD, private foundations and through fees for service. Nationally, NWGF is recognized for excellence in homeownership services, having assisted more than 1,300 families become homeowners in Great Falls since NWGF was founded in 1980.


Content Archived: October 11, 2013