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USDA invested $96.3M to help 733 rural families buy homes in ’23

The agency recognized five lending partners in Puerto Rico.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is marking National Homeownership Month in Puerto Rico, confirming it invested more than $96.3 million to enable individuals in rural and underserved regions to purchase, construct and renovate affordable residences in Puerto Rico’s smallest towns and communities.

The agency presented awards to the following lenders: HR Mortgage Corp. approved 239 loans worth nearly $25 million; Banco Popular Puerto Rico, with 165 loans totaling more than $29.2 million; Home Mortgage Bankers, with 126 loans totaling $14 million; FirstBank Puerto Rico, with 118 loans exceeding $17.4 million; and The Money House Inc., with 85 loans totaling nearly $10.7 million.

During a meeting to recognize the banking industry partners, Maximiliano Trujillo-Ortega, the agency’s local director, also confirmed that USDA Rural Development’s Single-Family Housing Program invested $114.5 million in Puerto Rico in fiscal 2023, assisting 965 families and individuals with their housing needs.

The agency did so through several programs: a total of 17 direct loans totaling nearly $2.5 million; 853 loan guarantees totaling $109 million; three repair loans totaling $58,825; seven repair grants totaling $61,300; and 85 Rural Disaster Home Repair grants totaling $2.4 million.

Trujillo-Ortega also announced that the USDA is inviting organizations to apply for grants to repair affordable housing in rural communities. Eligible partners include state governments, municipalities, and nonprofit and faith-based organizations.

The USDA is providing funds through the Housing Preservation Program (HPG). These funds may be used to:

  • Repair or replace electrical wiring, foundations, roof, insulation and water/waste disposal systems.
  • Support accessibility.
  • Purchase construction materials.
  • Finance administrative expenses up to 20%.

Last year, Puerto Rico was awarded $817,417 through the HPG Program, helping 11 institutions and municipalities repair homes across Puerto Rico.

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.
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