Real Estate News
Local Fire Fighters, Nurses, Police Officers and Teachers Have More Home Purchasing Power through CAAR Workforce Housing Fund
Changes to Workforce Housing Fund Guidelines Result in Six New Home Ownership Success Stories
CAAR, the voice of real estate in the Central Virginia region, has announced changes to the guidelines for its signature program available to local residents who are employed in important public service roles.
Now in its 10th year, the CAAR Workforce Housing Fund (WHF) was established by the real estate community and is administered by Piedmont Housing Alliance. WHF supports fire fighters, nurses, police officers and teachers who want to own a home near their work but find their income levels do not meet lending criteria. This vital community partnership helps eligible homebuyers with down payment and closing costs. Since its establishment, WHF has helped 46 families become homeowners, but the pace of applicants has dwindled in recent years.
“An unfortunate side effect of the recession was receiving only two applications in 24 months. This showed the CAAR Board of Directors that it was time to make changes so that Workforce Housing Fund opportunities could be utilized by more hard-working residents and families,” John Ince, CAAR president and associate broker at Nest Realty Group, said.
The CAAR Board approved two modifications to the WFH to encourage more participation:
• The first change opens up the Workforce Housing Fund to borrowers who purchase and serve anywhere within the Thomas Jefferson Planning District, which includes the City of Charlottesville and counties of Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa and Nelson. Previously, purchasers were limited to purchase in the specific community in which they worked.
• The second change brings the interest rate in-line with those of the Albemarle County Housing Assistance Program, which currently has a 3 percent simple interest rate. The original WHF guidelines required a 6 percent simple interest loan.
In the six short months since those revisions went into effect, Piedmont Housing reports the following Workforce Housing Fund success stories:
A police officer was able to buy an affordable home in Charlottesville with $11,495 in CAAR WHF down payment assistance.
Another police officer and his family bought a home in Fluvanna County, with $7,000 in down payment assistance from the CAAR Fund.
A Louisa County teacher’s loan was approved by using $4,870 from the CAAR WHF.
A Charlottesville teacher was able to buy an affordable home in Ruckersville with $9,950 from CAAR.
Another teacher bought a home in Albemarle County with $10,295 from the CAAR WHF.
The most recent closing was by a nurse who bought a home in Albemarle County with $10,950 in assistance from the CAAR WHF.
“Often times the funds available from CAAR make it possible to leverage additional funds at the county level,” Frank Grosch, Piedmont Housing’s executive director, said. “Our partnership helps public servants in our communities put roots down in the area that they serve, and Piedmont Housing is proud to work with local real estate professionals to make that happen.”
“As part of the CAAR leadership team nothing has impressed me more than the willingness and desire of our members to give back to the community, especially on housing related issues like the Workforce Housing Fund,” Ince added. “It is so rewarding to witness the positive impact these 1,000 members have in virtually all the communities served by CAAR.”
Contact a local REALTOR® to learn how to start the qualification process.
About CAAR: The Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS® (CAAR) represents more than 1,000 real estate professionals in Charlottesville and Albemarle and the surrounding areas of Greene, Fluvanna, Nelson, Louisa counties. For more information on CAAR, pick up a copy of the CAAR Real Estate Weekly, visit www.caar.com, or contact your REALTOR®.
About PHA: Piedmont Housing Alliance is a non-profit affordable housing provider for the Thomas Jefferson Planning District in Central Virginia, including the City of Charlottesville, Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa and Nelson counties. It is a “one-stop-shop” for the full range of affordable housing services, including free housing counseling, free first-time homebuyers classes, access to affordable financing and down payment assistance. PHA also develops and manages properties to ensure a supply of high-quality affordable housing to both renters and buyers. PHA is a HUD-certified housing counseling agency and a VA state Community Housing Development Organization (CHDO), and is certified by the US Treasury as a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI). For more information, visit www.piedmonthousing.org.
Events Around Town
Healthy Boys: A Talk and Discussion with Joel Salatin of Polyface Farm
The Field School of Charlottesville is pleased to announce “Healthy Boys: A Talk and Discussion with Joel Salatin” on Saturday, May 17th at 10:30 a.m. at the Paramount Theater.
Salatin, of Polyface Farms, is an internationally known farmer who celebrates local food and its connection to healthy communities. His farming ideas-deemed radical by some– have been highlighted in Time magazine, the New York Times, National Geographic, Smithsonian, and other outlets. He was profiled by Peter Jennings on ABC World News as part of Lives of the 21st Century as well as Michael Pollan’s bestseller, The Omnivore’s Dilemma.
Salatin will share his unique perspective on cultivating healthy boys through practical strategies including:
• school lunches
• thoughtful decision making
Event Sponsors: The Field School of Charlottesville is a middle school for boys with the mission of developing well-rounded boys of character and accomplishment. Additional sponsors include Field Camp, Blue Ridge Swim Club, Ashtanga Yoga Charlottesville, Local Food Hub, and Mudhouse Coffee.
TICKETS: $12 Adult, $8 Youth 14 & Under and includes lunch provided by Field School Chef Patrick Critzer to all participants at the conclusion of the event.
BOX OFFICE: 215 East Main Street, Charlottesville, VA 22902 Monday – Friday 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
More Info: www.fieldschoolcv.net or call 434.823.3435