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Housing conference works to bring more affordable options

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April 8, 2008

Albany -- Home ownership is an option many don't realize may be within their reach. And the Southwest Georgia Housing Task force is working to change this. 

"The disparity between what homes are selling for and what people incomes are, you realize that more education is needed," said Housing Task Force Director, Barbara Reddick.

The housing task force is working to bring more development to 14 counties in the area. "Some counties in our region, there are less than two building permits issued in an entire year," said Reddick.

They're focusing on providing more affordable housing and with the economic slowdown, that's in more demand. "We are targeting non-profit, local government, faith based organizations and developers," said Reddick. 

"There is more of a need. There is definitely more of a need in Terrell County, and I just hope that I can help as many people as I can possibly help in Terrell county," said Susie Clyde of the Habitat for Humanity.

With the current state of the housing market, now is the time to provide for it. "With it being a buyers market this is the best time to buy with home loan interest rates under 5 %," said Allied Home Mortgage Branch Manager, Fred Polite.

Attendees also learned about counseling potential homeowners once the housing becomes available. "Down payment assistance, increasing their credit score, lack of savings, we will prepare them for this. The process sometimes could take 6 to 18 months to get them ready to get into a home," said City of Albany Housing Counselor, B.J. Jackson Burton.

A process Susie Clyde says is worth it. "It gives people a sense of value, something to look forward too, pride."

These preparations will put more people into homes instead of out of them. The housing symposium continues tomorrow at Merry Acres. For more information on the event, you can call 229-522-3552.

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