SHREVEPORT, La., Dec. 21, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- For some, the "American Dream" may be difficult to achieve. Luckily, the Fuller Center for Housing Northwest Louisiana (Fuller Center NWLA) makes it easier for residents in the Shreveport-Bossier area to achieve that dream. The organization is building eight new single-family homes in Shreveport's Allendale neighborhood, thanks in part to a $55,800 Affordable Housing Program (AHP) grant from Red River Bank and the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas (FHLB Dallas). The grant funds will help with land acquisition, down payment assistance, construction, closing costs, and homebuyer counseling assistance.
"Everyone should experience the 'American Dream,'" said Fuller Center NWLA Executive Director Lee A. Jeter, Sr. "Our goal is to help low-income residents of Shreveport-Bossier become homeowners and active members of the community. This grant allows us to make the dream a reality for Shreveport residents."
Construction has started on four of eight homes, with the next two homes starting construction in the fall of 2016 and the final two homes are expected to be completed in late 2016 or early 2017. Among the eight new homeowners are two veterans.
The Fuller Center NWLA is committed to building affordable new homes for low-income individuals in an effort to eliminate substandard housing in Shreveport-Bossier. The organization provides a no-interest mortgage, and all applicants are required to attend credit counseling and home management classes, as well as complete at least 350 hours of volunteer work on home projects, with at least 100 hours completed on their own homes.
"We like to call this 'sweat equity,'" Mr. Jeter said. "This enables applicants to learn about the construction of their own homes so they may be able to perform future repairs themselves, instead of having to pay someone else to do it."
FHLB Dallas annually returns 10 percent of its profits in the form of AHP grants to the communities served by its member institutions such as Red River Bank. AHP grants fund a variety of projects, including home rehabilitation and modifications for low-income, elderly, and special-needs residents; down payment and closing cost assistance for qualified first-time homebuyers; and the construction of low-income, multifamily rental communities and single-family homes.
"Our commitment to helping the members of the Shreveport-Bossier community is strengthened by our continued partnership with FHLB Dallas," said Janeasse Seastrunk, vice president, Community Relations officer at Red River Bank.
In 2015, FHLB Dallas awarded $7.4 million in AHP grants to 32 projects that will result in 965 new or renovated housing units. Louisiana received $919,227 for the construction or renovation of 157 units.
"Helping individuals achieve homeownership is a great step in reducing substandard housing," said Greg Hettrick, vice president and director of Community Investment at FHLB Dallas. "FHLB Dallas is proud to support member institution Red River Bank in furthering Fuller Center's mission."
About Red River Bank
Red River Bank is a full service community bank headquartered in Alexandria, Louisiana. Red River Bank was chartered in 1998 in Rapides Parish and began operating its first banking center in Alexandria in 1999. Red River Bank offers consumer and commercial banking services and products, mortgage lending services, and investment services. For more information, logon to redriverbank.net.
About the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas
The Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas is one of 11 district banks in the FHLBank system created by Congress in 1932. FHLB Dallas, with total assets of $43.0 billion as of September 30, 2015, is a member-owned cooperative that supports housing and community development by providing competitively priced advances and other credit products to approximately 865 members and associated institutions in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, and Texas. Visit fhlb.com for more information.
Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas
SOURCE Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas