Families celebrated the first step to affordable homeownership during a ground breaking ceremony for the Pokai Bay Self-Help Housing Project in Waianae, Hawaii.

Low-income families participating in the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Self-Help Housing Program will build their own homes on construction teams, also assisting their neighbors to build homes. During the construction period, which averages about a year, families will provide 65 percent of the labor, known as sweat equity, which helps them qualify for an affordable mortgage.

The Pokai Bay Self-Help Housing Project will include 70 homes, on lots ranging from 5,000 to 9,000 square feet. Self-Help Housing Corporation of Hawaii (SHHCH) a USDA Section 523 grantee, is developing the project, which included financing from Rural Community Assistance Corporation’s Loan Fund. Families received mortgages through USDA Rural Development Section 502 Direct Loan Program.

“As we speak, Rural Development programs under the U.S.D.A. are on the chopping block. Pokai Bay is an example of those funds directly helping families that would otherwise never have this opportunity,” said Claudia Shay, executive director of SHHCH.

To learn more, go here: http://khon2.com/2017/06/20/ground-broken-on-affordable-self-help-housing-project-in-waianae/