Editor’s note: The City of Fairborn proclaimed April 17-April 22 as Community Development Week. Therefore, check this week’s Tuesday-Saturday editions of the Fairborn Daily Herald for more information regarding Fairborn’s community development efforts.
FAIRBORN — Fairborn citizens in need can get help with necessary home repairs thanks to the help of Community Development Block Grant dollars.
“The Community Development Block Grant can be used for multiple things,” Neighborhood Betterment Director Missy Frost said. “We target using it for code enforcement and improving our housing stock by assisting low-to-moderate income persons with rehabs and repairs to their properties.”
Housing repairs can fund items impacting the structural integrity of the home, such as the roof, plumbing, doors, windows, electricity, siding — essentially the “main components of the house,” she said.
“The age of the bulk of our housing stock is over 50-60 years old and a lot of our residents are pushing that [age] as well, so to be able to help them stay in their house after living there 20, 30 years and they want to [stay in their home], we want to help them do that,” Frost said.
Offering home repair assistance also helps the city address code enforcement concerns, therefore improving the overall aesthetics of the city. Individuals wishing to receive assistance can start the process by calling Frost at 937-754-3060 and undergoing an application process. A city official will inspect and assess the home for the needs and the repairs will start there. Timing for the entire process typically takes four-to-six months, but can vary depending on the type of repair and weather conditions.
“Typically, the amount of assistance we give can become a second mortgage on their property, but that becomes totally forgiven over a five-year time span. So 75 percent of it is forgiven after five years, the remaining 25 percent is due and payable when the deed transfers or whenever they sell the house,” Frost said. “There’s no out-of-pocket money for the homeowner to get these repairs for their home.”
City code enforcement officers have previously alerted citizens of these grant dollars because they were unaware that help was available, ultimately directing them to Frost and lending a hand to a homeowner in need. She started working for the City of Fairborn in June 2014 and has seen approximately 18 homes receive repairs; this year, they’re on track to repair six-to-eight homes.
“It’s very rewarding to be able to help the homeowner who has been in her house her entire life and wants to be able to stay there another 30 years and to be able to make that happen for her,” Frost said. ” … It’s a very cool feeling — that’s their home, that’s their life and to be able to make it better for them in a better environment — there’s not many other feelings like that.”
Reach Whitney Vickers at 937-502-4532.
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