Iowa’s cold and windy winters, which average more than 30 inches of snow, ice and rain, can take a toll on homes, especially older ones with aging roofs, siding or windows. If a homeowner is in need of essential repairs such as a new furnace, roof, siding, or accessibility improvements, USDA Rural Development’s home repair low-interest loan and/or grant program is available to help eligible households make needed improvements.
Loans have a fixed interest rate as low as one percent and typically may be repaid over a term of 20 years. Grants are available to help applicants who are 62 or older, and who cannot repay a loan, remove health and safety hazards or to make the home accessible for a disabled family member. Bill Menner, USDA Rural Development State Director in Iowa, says “These loans and grants help eligible families make needed repairs that they otherwise couldn’t afford. Through this program a family can get a $3,000 loan that has a monthly payment as low as $13.80.”
Examples of eligible home repair projects include, but are not limited to, repair/replacement of storm doors, windows, steps, furnaces, water heaters or roofs. Funds can also be used for insulation, electrical, plumbing, septic and water systems, and to provide accessibility for persons with disabilities. Homes repaired with these funds must be located in communities of less than 20,000 people or in rural areas.
Along with loans and grants to repair homes, USDA Rural Development has two low-interest, no-down-payment loan programs to help eligible families purchase new homes.
To learn more about USDA Rural Development’s housing programs please call (515) 284-4444, email DirectIA@ia.usda.gov or visit www.rd.usda.gov/ia.