CRA gives qualified residents opportunities for home makeover

Homestead Mayor Steven Bateman, Homestead resident Johnnie Ruth Brown, CRA Director Jordan W.

By Alyna Bello….

Homestead Mayor Steven Bateman, Homestead resident Johnnie Ruth Brown, CRA Director Jordan W.

City of Homestead Mayor Steven Bateman, Vice-Mayor Judy Waldman, and City Council leaders along with the Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) staff presented nine families close to $100,000 in grant money to improve their homes. The goals of these programs are to improve the quality of life for homeowners and residents, bring properties up to current building code, improve and upgrade the appearance of the area, and facilitate and encourage redevelopment activity in the area.

The Residential and Landscaping Grant Programs were developed to provide low and moderate Income, singlefamily residents with the financial assistance needed to make necessary home improvements and enhance the appearance of their houses. The Residential grant program was divided into two categories, the Emergency Home Repair Grant and the Residential Façade Improvement Grant. Qualified applicants can be provided up to $10,000 per residence.

Through the Emergency Home Repair Grant funding is provided for emergency repairs in order to make their home a safe, secure, and sanitary place. By creating this program it has allowed Homestead residents to be able to bring their properties up to current building codes, to improve the well-being of the homeowners, preserve the quality of the neighborhoods, and maintain property values. The other component of the residential grant, the Residential Façade Improvement Grant is for the improvement of the exterior portion of the residence. Some of these improvements are: exterior painting (exterior paint colors shall be from the approved City of Homestead color palette), exterior door or window replacement, installation of a privacy fence and minor landscaping improvements.

Through the Landscape grant, residents will be able to receive up to $5,000 to assist in the installation or improvement of their landscaping. The program will not reimburse an owner for work previously done, already underway, or work with a current permit. All improvements must comply with the City of Homestead’s Landscape Code and must be maintained in accordance with the City’s landscaping maintenance standards.

All three grants are limited to one time per residence for the life of the program, require no matching funds, and do not need to be paid back. Out of the three, qualified applicants can only receive two grants, one residential and one landscaping. The grant funding is available on a “first come, first qualified, first served” basis. Applicants must reside within the Homestead CRA boundaries .To view the CRA map boundaries, get copy of the applications, or learn more about eligibility requirement and improvements please visit the City of Homestead website at ty_hall/cra.aspx.

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