Emery Chamber Housing Subcommittee Learns of The Self Help Construction Housing Program

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By Julie Johansen

The Housing Subcommittee of the Emery County Business Chamber featured Vikki Ori, Housing Program Manager with Southeastern Regional Development Agency (SERDA), at its meeting on Monday, March 18. Ori presented information to the group about the Mutual Self Help Ground Up Construction Housing Program. This program is where participants work together with the help of a construction supervisor, helping each other build their homes.

She gave a list of five qualifications for this program: anyone who does not currently have a home or mortgage payment, anyone who fits within the annual income guidelines, anyone who has good credit, with a score of 6.4 or better and can qualify for a 502 mortgage to cover the cost of the building, and anyone who has the desire to achieve home ownership.

She also reminded all that no prior construction experience is required to participate in this program. The expectation of the Self Help Housing is that all participants will work for a minimum of 17 hours per week and will have some committed volunteers who will help for another 13 hours a week. There have been four homes completed in the Price area where the residents are now home owners.

The main purpose of this program is to work with individuals to build their own homes. Land acquisitions have been through CDBG grants to government entities and then sold to the eventual home owners. Sixty-five percent of the cost is done by sweat equity with a barn raising philosophy.

Ori is assembling a waiting list for Group 3, which will start in 2024. Appointments can be made to start the process by contacting Ori at (435) 613-0026 or vori@seualg.utah.gov.

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