HOPE is in the process of constructing a new home at 908 SE 6th St. This home will be completed in the Summer of 2017. The area is experience a high interest in new homes and this home has already been purchased before completion. The following are pictures of the development:
To date 21 attractive energy-efficient homes have been constructed under the City of Evansville’s Arts District initiative. Simply, it is a comprehensive plan developed by the City to revitalize selected inner-city neighborhoods with a combination of new construction, rehab, and homeowner repair. The area first selected for development center city neighborhoods located west of Hwy 41 and south of Lloyd Expressway. Although by definition “affordable housing” is being created as an important benefit or by-product of this project, it is first and foremost a community revitalization effort to stabilize and improve neighborhoods, and increase property values for all homeowners.
The developer of the new homes is HOPE of Evansville, Inc (HOPE), a local not-for-profit organization created in 1967 for the purpose of providing housing counseling and related services. HOPE has established partnerships with the City of Evansville, local lenders, foundations, and the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority (IHCDA) to secure and administer the funding necessary to finance the cost of the homes; coordinate the lot preparation and construction of the homes; and finally to qualify, prepare and assist buyers in their purchase of the homes.
The initial primary source of subsidy (the difference between development costs and the appraised value) for the new homes was IHCDA, using a grant named Improving Neighborhoods Through Revitalization. Subsequent funding was provided through the HOME Partnerships Program, and the Neighborhood Stabilization Program as administered by the City of Evansville. Other funders have included the City Endowment Fund, the Evansville Housing Trust Fund and various municipal departments that have waived customary fees as in-kind contributions. A number of other donors have supported the administration of HOPE, including but not limited to, Old National, Fifth Third & Integra Banks, Vectren Foundation, State Farm Insurance, Bussing Foundation, and other local financial institutions.
The homes are constructed by pre-qualified local professional home builders with many years of experience and excellent reputations in the Evansville area. They meet certain energy-efficient standards with several also attaining the federal Energy Star certification for energy efficiency, as well as the National Homebuilders Green Building Standards certification. They are furnished with all appliances, 2 car attached garages for safety and security, private baths and walk-in closets in the master bedrooms, full front porches, professional landscaping, a comprehensive 10 year warranty, security system, ceramic tile, and many other features as well.
Due to the source of the subsidy provided, the homes must be sold for no more than appraised value and only to individuals or families who meet income qualifications and are “first-time homebuyers.” Buyers must have a verified annual gross income below 80% of area median income (AMI) based upon household size (currently $49,100 for a household of 4). Buyers must also have enough income and acceptable credit to secure a mortgage with a local lender.
The buyer(s) of any of the listed the properties must meet the following requirements or regulations:
- They must have adequate credit and income to qualify for a non-predatory fixed-rate mortgage loan, preferably with a participating local partner lender.
- For some of the homes, their front-end ratio must not exceed 30% of gross monthly income, and their back-end ratio must not exceed 40% of gross monthly income.
- They must complete a HUD-certified homebuyer education course through HOPE of Evansville or other acceptable housing counseling provider, such as CAPE.
- They must be first-time homebuyers.
- They must agree to live in the home as their primary residence (usually 5 years). If the home is sold prior to the end of that particular period, certain restrictions and/or payback requirements may apply.
- Their annual income must be at or below certain limits based upon household size. This is gross household income with no deductions, and it must be verified by HOPE staff. There are no limits on cash-value assets, however the interest earned or imputed from those assets is included in calculating income.
Certain homes are restricted to households with income below 80% of area median, and others are restricted to households with income below 120% of area median. The current maximum gross annual household income limits are as follows:
Evansville Arts District Fact Sheet