GROW South Dakota makes housing a development priority
From its roots as the Northeast South Dakota Economic Corporation, established in 1978 to serve just ten counties, GROW South Dakota has evolved to bring community development success to the entire state.
In 2012 the decision was made to unite three initiatives: housing, community and economic development under the GROW South Dakota name. The organization strives to improve the quality of life in South Dakota communities—and housing programs are a key element in the GROW strategy.
“Most people know us for economic development,” said Lori Finnesand CEO of GROW South Dakota, “but we’ve seen a need for housing in every community we serve. Really, housing and economic development go hand in hand.”
Among the programs GROW features are loan products available for veterans and other low to moderate income South Dakota residents to assist with home purchase and home improvement financing. The veterans program includes down payment assistance and closing costs, home purchase options and improvement loans for both new purchasers and for current homeowners.
Recognizing the importance of maintaining existing homes, GROW also offers assistance in weatherization and homeowner repair. Common weatherization repairs include adding insulation in walls and attics, weather stripping doors and windows, minor repairs and furnace repairs and replacements.
Homeowner repair funds assist income eligible owner-occupied homes with needed home improvements such as shingles, plumbing, electrical upgrades or siding. Low interest home improvement loans may be available to current homeowners for energy efficient repairs and health and safety improvements of an existing home.
“Regardless of what size the community, these programs are needed to enable the home owner to remain living in a safe and affordable home. In a smaller community, the resources needed to provide these types of services is limited or nonexistent,” said Lori Moen, GROW South Dakota Chief Operating Officer. “When communities can provide quality housing, the home owner is not the only one who benefits, the community as a whole benefits.”
To check the requirements and eligibility for any GROW South Dakota housing program and find more information about GROW’s mission in South Dakota communities, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or go to growsd.org.