Albemarle County Makes Affordable Housing a Reality for Nine Families

By: Lisa Ferrari Email
By: Lisa Ferrari Email

November 15, 2007

If you think housing prices have gone through the roof and you can't afford a home in the area that may not be true.

Albemarle County's affordable housing program has just helped nine low income families buy homes well under fair market value at Avon Park.

The nine families moving into the $240,000 town homes are fire fighters, teachers, police officers or hardworking people who make less than $50,000 a year.

Sarah Rannigan, her husband, daughter Mia and dog Dasha are one of those families. They were able to purchase a new home they never thought they would be able afford. “We got this for $175,000 which was our limit which we were really lucky to find,” said Rannigan.

Luck was only part of it. These discounted town homes selling for $65,000 less that fair market value were made possible through the county's affordable housing program. As part of a rezoning deal the developer, Church Hill Homes, offered nine of 51 homes at a reduced price.

“What happened here is people who wanted to become home owners maybe for years never thought they'd be able to achieve it but because of this program achieved home ownership,” said Greg Slater of Church Hill Homes.

The nine families were selected from a waiting list of people qualified for affordable housing. Most of the people who live in these homes are teachers, single moms or young people just starting out -- who with a little assistance were able to buy their two bedroom three bath dream home.

“We love it so much I mean we have gone from rental to rental to rental and we wanted to find a place to stay with the baby and now we can stay here and get settled,” said Rannigan.

And if you’re wondering if these new home owners can turn around and sell their homes for a profit. No, they can’t. Not right away anyway. They must live in the home for fives years before they can sell the home and keep the equity.

If you want more information on Albemarle County’s affordable home program here are some numbers to call:

Shelley Murphy, The Piedmont Housing Alliance 817-2436 ext 104
Greg Slater at Church Hill Homes 975-0085 ext 101
Bill Hamrick, C7F Mortgage Branch Manager 990-2022

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