June is Homeownership Month

Farragut first-time homebuyers may be surprised to learn they may be eligible for

loans from Tennessee Housing Development Agency.

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam has declared June to be Homeownership Month at the request of THDA.

“We always encourage new homeowners to start [their home-buying experience] by going to Greatchoicetn.com, where they will find information about mortgages and who offers it in their area,” Ralph M. Perrey, THDA executive director, said.

Part of THDA’s mission is to make homeownership affordable to a wider range of Tennesseans through responsible financing options and the availability of down payment assistance, Rick Lewis, THDA communications coordinator, said.

“Something that will surprise people in Farragut is the income ranges we can serve,” Perrey said. “Because THDA has a lot of programs that help low-income individuals, people assume they make too much money to qualify for financing from a THDA lender, but they will find someone with a household income in the $60,000 range can still qualify for a Great Choice mortgage.

THDA’s acquisition limit of a home is about $250,000, he said.

“I’ll bet there are more families in Farragut who can qualify for a Great Choice mortgage.

“We offer a competitive rate in a 30-year fixed rate, no-gimmick mortgage, and we can help cover a portion of the down payment and closing costs,” he added. “That’s important for first-time homebuyers who have not saved as much as they would have liked or have not counted on closing costs.

“Construction of new single-family homes in the Volunteer State is rising faster here than in the rest of the South and the nation,” Perrey said. “Statewide, construction was up 17 percent in the first quarter compared to a year ago, versus an 8-percent growth in the region and 12 percent nationally.

“Every time you see a home under construction, that’s an investment being made in the local community,” Perrey added. “Homeownership has traditionally been one of the best tools

to build up a family’s wealth

and financial security. Plus, research has shown that homeowners are more involved in their communities, they put down deeper roots, and their children do better in school.”

Perrey has been elected to serve on the board of trustees of National Housing Conference, the nation’s oldest housing advocacy organization, dedicated to the affordable housing mission since its founding in 1931. He is the first Tennessean to be selected for the NHC board.

THDA works with a network of approved private lenders to

provide fixed interest rate

home loans and down payment assistance to more than 2,000 Tennessee homebuyers of middle to moderate income every year. Information on THDA’s down payment assistance program can be found at GreatChoiceTN.com.