New Minneapolis Advantage funding offers aid to home buyers

The City of Minneapolis, the Federal Home Loan Bank of Des Moines and Well Fargo have announced that $1.5 million in new funding from FHLB Des Moines will be used to help homeowners in more than twenty neighborhoods with down payment and closing costs to purchase foreclosed properties in areas most affected by foreclosures.

Through FHLB Des Moines Affordable Housing Program (AHP), $1 million is available for home purchases in north Minneapolis and $500,000 in the northeast and south central areas of the City. Funds will help low income households (those making less than 80% of area median income) purchase foreclosed homes. The homebuyers will also receive homebuyer and homeownership education through the Minnesota Home Ownership Center.

FHLB Des Moines considered Minneapolis for this grant because of the City's successful Minneapolis Advantage

The Minneapolis Advantage program provides $10,000 grants to homebuyers for down payment and closing cost assistance for the purchase of foreclosed properties. The property must be a foreclosed property, purchased for owner-occupancy, and owned for a minimum of five years. The FHLB Des Moines grant will be added to existing city and private funds for Minneapolis Advantage.

The criteria used to select the Minneapolis Advantage pilot neighborhoods was used to target areas for the FHLB Des Moines program – those neighborhoods with a significant percentage of vacant and boarded properties:

These grants can be used for the purchase, construction or rehabilitation of rental and single family housing that assists households that are less than 80% of area median income. Each year FHLB Des Moines commits 10 percent of its annual net income to developing affordable housing. Since 1990, FHLB Des Moines has awarded more than $168 million through its Affordable Housing Program to create 34,703 homeownership and rental units.

The City of Minneapolis will announce further details of the application process for these grants and expects to launch the program in March 2009.

The Federal Home Loan Bank of Des Moines is a wholesale cooperative bank that provides low-cost short and long-term funding and community lending to more than 1,200 members, including commercial banks, saving institutions, credit unions and insurance companies. Wells Fargo in Minnesota provides financial services from 245 locations and employs approximately 20,000 team members throughout the state.

Published Jan 7, 2009