Seniors eligible for forgivable federal loans

COVINGTON -- Newton and Rockdale seniors who qualify as low to very low income under standards set by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development may be eligible to receive a forgivable loan for certain home improvements.

Federal Home Loan Bank of Atlanta is offering loans of up to $15,000 for seniors age 62 and older to put in place energy efficient appliances or make their homes handicap accessible.

To qualify, individuals must make 80 percent or less than the area median income as determined by HUD. They must also commit in writing to stay in their homes for at least five years following improvements and have owned the home for at least one year prior to applying.

The Family Community Housing Association Inc., a non-profit based in Newton, is the local intermediary for the program for Rockdale and Newton residents.

"Most people that have been in their homes a long time who don't plan on moving, this is the perfect program for them," said Executive Director Julius Webb.

Eligible under the energy efficiency and weatherization program are improvements to exterior doors; heating,ventilation and air conditioning systems; insulation; water heaters; roof; windows; low-flow plumbing; floors; and walls.

Projects included under the accessibility rehabilitation program are exterior ramps; sidewalks or driveways; handicapped bathrooms; kitchen cabinets and sinks; carpentry to widen doors; and replacement of floor coverings.

Call Webb at 770-787-4436 for more information.