by Ruth Scott
SBJ Contributing Writer
Financial assistance is available for eligible property owners in the center city area of Springfield, according to Chuck Marinec, grants administrator for the city. Through the Housing and Rehabilitation Loan Program, the city Department of Planning and Development provides low-interest loans for property renovation, he said.
"There are basically two programs, one for owner/occupants, and another for investor-owned property," Marinec said. Both programs provide loans for complete rehabilitation of the property, he said, "to meet minimum property standards."
Owner occupants may receive a 5 percent interest loan, with portions of the loan being deferred according to family income. To qualify for this program, a family must have an income of 80 percent of the median or less, Marinec said.
Loans are also available for renovation of investor-owned property in low- and moderate-income areas. "Owners must agree to income caps in accordance with federal and state regulations," Marinec said. These loans are offered at 5 percent interest, and some parts may be deferred in order to keep the units affordable. The units must also be held for lower income families.
The boundaries for the center city area generally consist of Glenstone to the east, West Bypass to the west, Grand to the south and the northern city limits.
According to Marinec, the department's goal is to rehabilitate 60 housing units a year, which is about 1 percent of the city's substandard housing stock. Recently, that goal has been exceeded. "We have completed over 100 units in each of the past two years," he said.
For more information about these loan programs, call the city at 864-1038.
Fishing retail shop Modern Outdoor Tackle moved; Healthy Spot LLC opened; and Springfield law firm Strong, Garner & Bauer PC changed names and moved its office.