Raleigh, North Carolina, May 23, 2012 -- USDA Rural Development Housing Administrator Tammye Treviño today met with lenders, housing counselors and other stakeholders and encouraged rural homeowners to participate in a pilot program to obtain lower mortgage interest rates.
“North Carolina is one of 19 states participating in the USDA Guaranteed Single Family Housing Refinance Pilot Program, and I am here today to let homeowners know how they may be able to refinance their mortgage and reduce their monthly costs,” Treviño said. “This program is designed to encourage eligible homeowners to take advantage of historically low home mortgage rates.”
Today's announcements are the latest in a series of steps the Obama Administration has taken to strengthen the nation's economy and revitalize rural America. This program could benefit as many as 20,000 rural homeowners in North Carolina. Refinancing is available for any qualified rural homeowner with a loan made or guaranteed by USDA Rural Development, subject to eligibility requirements.
Eligible borrowers must have a current USDA home loan and must have made their mortgage payments on time for 12 consecutive months. They do not have to obtain new credit reports, property inspections or home appraisals. Refinanced loans must be at rates below the original interest rate. Terms cannot exceed 30 years. No cash out is permitted to the borrower. By lowering payments for qualifying homeowners, the program will help boost the economy in rural areas throughout North Carolina and other eligible states.
During her visit to North Carolina, Treviño also met with members of the Stylo family, who are owners of a new home in Knightdale that they were able to buy through Rural Development’s Direct Single Family Housing program.
Administrator Treviño also toured the construction site of Harnett Health Hospital in Lillington. This facility received funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Recovery Act). Just a few miles across town, Treviño toured the Lillington Community Center, which was also funded through the Recovery Act. The center offers services for elderly citizens as well as educational and cultural activities for the entire community.
Rounding out her visit to North Carolina, Treviño stopped in Erwin to see the construction site of the Good Hope Hospital. When completed, this inpatient psychiatric facility will have 16 beds and serve the residents of Harnett County and surrounding areas.
Since taking office, President Obama's Administration has taken historic steps to improve the lives of rural Americans, put people back to work and build thriving economies in rural communities. From proposing the American Jobs Act to establishing the first-ever White House Rural Council – chaired by Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack – the President is committed to a smarter use of existing Federal resources to foster sustainable economic prosperity and ensure the government is a strong partner for businesses, entrepreneurs and working families in rural communities.
USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, administers and manages housing, business and community infrastructure and facility programs through a national network of state and local offices. Rural Development has an active portfolio of more than $165 billion in loans and loan guarantees. These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural areas.
USDA Rural Development has seven area offices and 14 field offices across the state serving North Carolinians living in rural areas and communities. Area offices are in Asheville, Shelby, Lumberton, Asheboro, Henderson, Kinston and Smithfield. Further information on rural programs is available at a local USDA Rural Development office, or on the web at www.rurdev.usda.gov/nc or www.rurdev.usda.gov.
USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (866) 632-9992 (Toll-free Customer Service), (800) 877-8339 (Local or Federal relay), (866) 377-8642 (Relay voice users).