Niagara Falls offers loans to help residents repair their homes

Mayor Robert Restaino hopes this helps those who find home repairs beyond their financial means.

NIAGARA FALLS, NY – The City of Niagara Falls is launching a loan program it hopes will help residents make repairs to their homes they otherwise couldn’t afford.

Loans available are up to $15,000, which can be repaid over 10 years at 3% interest, which is less than many banks and credit unions charge for home improvement or home equity loans in these days of rising interest rates.

Niagara Falls is a city where the median household income is $41,000, according to the US Census Bureau, and where Mayor Robert Restaino says homeowners, struggling to meet their mortgages and taxes, n often don’t have enough money to make repairs, so things tend to slip.

Loans could be for roof replacement, roof repair, porch repair, siding repair, painting, gutter repair and siding replacement,” Restaino said. “These are things that can be a bit out of reach of what an owner may have in terms of excess funds. …

“We hope that making these funds available to our residents will help them make the improvements that I know they would like to make to their homes, and which we would obviously like our residents to be able to afford to make.”

The city has a pool of $390,000 from a state grant that it will use to make the loans, meaning if each applicant received $15,000, that would only be enough to repair 26 homes. .

Mayor Restaino, however, expects most loan applications to be well below that, which would allow more people to take advantage of the program.

Applicants must own and occupy their home to qualify, which means rental properties will not be addressed in this program. And rental properties, especially those owned by absentee owners, tend to be the most abandoned structures.

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