TRI-CITIES, Tenn., Jun 15, 2011 -- USDA Rural Development Area Director Joe Woody recently recognized Citizen’s Bank for expanding the availability of affordable home loans in Northeast Tennessee in partnership with USDA. The announcement was in conjunction with National Homeownership Month.
"We are working hard to increase the awareness of Rural Development's housing programs," Woody said. "The more families that can achieve the dream of homeownership, the stronger our communities become. With 12 offices in the Tri-Cities area, Citizen’s Bank is helping us bring the dream of homeownership to families in the Northeastern region of the state."
Citizen’s Bank Executive Vice President Andrew Whetsel said by becoming a nationally approved Guaranteed Rural Housing lender, the bank not only increases its mortgage activity by offering mortgages to Carter, Johnson, Washington, Sullivan, Hawkins, Unicoi and Greene counties but they also make the dream of homeownership available to those who may not have thought they were able to achieve that dream.
Woody said Rural Development loan-guarantee programs help homeowners and rural businesses by working with private lenders like Citizen’s Bank to increase the pool of investment capital available for home loans, as well as business start-up, expansion and modernization.
Homeowners looking to alleviate unsafe conditions, make repairs, or add needed space may be eligible for an RD home-repair loan. The interest rate on these loans is fixed at one-percent and payments may be spread over as much as 20 years to keep the monthly payments affordable.
Rural Development (RD) home loans may be made without a down payment and eligible applicants may qualify for financing up to 100 percent of the appraised value. Depending on an applicant’s income, monthly payments may be based on an interest rate as low as one percent. Loans are typically made for 33 years at a fixed interest rate with varying income limitations depending on the county. Rural Development staff will help applicants calculate their adjusted household income and complete the application process.
USDA Rural Development invests in jobs, businesses, community infrastructure, homeownership and affordable rental housing in rural communities. Last year Rural Development assisted more than 1.5 million rural Tennessee families and businesses with more than $1.06 billion in financial assistance through affordable loans, loan-guarantees and grants.
For more information on Rural Development programs available in Northeast Tennessee contact the Rural Development Area Office in Greeneville at 423-638-4771 ext. 4, toll free at 800-342-3149 ext. 1490, or online at www.rurdev.usda.gov/tn.
USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender. To file a complaint of discrimination, write USDA,
Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20250-9410,
or call (800) 795-3272 TDD (615) 783-1397.