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NC City Program to Buy Cheap Houses on Listing Foreclosure

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By : John Cutts    99 or more times read
Emergency workers, teachers, fire fighters and police working in the city of Burlington in North Carolina will receive additional benefit that would allow them to buy cheap houses on listing foreclosure.

The city's inclusion in the Good Neighbor Next Door program has been approved by the U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD). This gives an opportunity for city workers to purchase HUD-foreclosed houses at an almost 50 percent discount.

The program will focus on areas with an increase number of foreclosure properties or those with low homeownership rate. The program will also cover neighborhoods where the average income of people is not more than 60 percent of the median income in the city, which is nearly $44,800 per year.

The Good Neighbor program of Burlington covers the eastern portion of the city, the entire downtown area and a portion of the west along Mebane Street. The program also covers a small area in Elon where police and fire department employees are eligible to purchase houses under the program.

Burlington's program is originally designed for first-time buyers. But any individual who has not owned a house within a year after buying a home guaranteed by the Federal Housing Authority through the HUD is eligible for the discount.

City Manager Harold Owen said that the program is a way to retain city employees. He explained that the approved neighborhoods in the city could change and expand because the HUD regularly updates revitalization areas.

Meanwhile, industry experts said that a number of foreclosure properties in Alamance County may qualify other communities for inclusion in the program. In 2009 alone, over 500 houses have been foreclosed in Alamance County.

They said that it would take a while before the program takes off in a new area. However, once several employees start to buy homes, the program quickly catches on. They noted that the program has been a success in Guilford County, adding that it help boost property values in neighborhoods and revive the areas that have been severely affected by the foreclosure crisis.

Furthermore, the program gives a chance to first-time buyers to have their own houses for less than the amount they are paying for rent.

The program requires Burlington residents to buy a house and live on it for at least 3 years. After this, homeowners are not required anymore to pay about 50 percent on their mortgage loan.

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