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Money available for homes in need of repair
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MONROE - For those living in homes in need of essential repairs this summer, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development has low-interest loans and grants available to help eligible people and families make needed improvements.

Grants are available to help applicants who are 62 or older and who cannot repay a loan to remove health and safety hazards or to make the home accessible for a disabled family member.

Loans have a fixed interest rate as low as one percent and typically may be repaid over a term of 20 years. A large amount of loan funds are available to assist rural Wisconsin homeowners.

Examples of eligible projects include 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.

To be eligible for a repair loan, the family applying must own and live in the home to be repaired, lack personal resources to pay for needed repairs, have a good credit history, limited assets and have repayment ability.

To qualify for assistance, household income must fall under income limits for the county and household size. For most counties, a one-person household must have an adjusted income of $21,000 or less, and a two-person household must have an adjusted income of $24,000 or less. Limits increase for larger household sizes.

Last year, USDA Rural Development reinvested more than $828 million back into Wisconsin rural communities. This home repair loan and grant program assisted 148 households in 2012.

For more information, contact USDA Rural Development at 608-935-2791 ext. 4 or visit