Need a house makeover? You may qualify

Published 12:03 am Tuesday, August 9, 2011

NATCHEZ — Homeowners struggling to make ends meet in a rundown house may qualify for a grant to fund a home makeover.

The Adams County Board of Supervisors is currently accepting applicants to be among the five submissions for a state HOME Investment Partnership Program grant, which is funded through the Housing and Urban Development.

The grant would fund the demolition of a house in poor condition and the reconstruction of a house on the property.

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Board President Darryl Grennell said the county has applied for similar grants in the past but has not had enough applicants that meet the specific qualifications.

Applicants must meet the following requirements to apply.

• Owner of house must currently reside in house, have clear title, deed proving ownership and no mortgage.

• The house must be in deplorable condition of which it is not feasible to repair.

• Owner must provide one year of utilities bill that proves the house has been occupied and the bill must be in his/her name.

• The owner must provide six months proof of income for every household member via check stubs, social security statements or any other source of income. The overall income level of the household is one of the ranking factors in the application.

Board members said they hoped to get more applicants this year than in the past in order to receive the grant.

“It’s a great grant because the recipients get a new house, but they’ve got to own that house,” Grennell said.

If the applicant inherited his or her house, the deed must be in the applicant’s name, Grennell said.

The houses submitted will be ranked and scored based on the homes overall condition, the household income level and the size of the house and number of occupants. Top scoring houses will be submitted for the grant application, an ad placed by the board said.

Those interested in applying should contact the county grant administrator, Allen Laird, at Southwest Mississippi Planning and Development District at 601-446-6044.