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Federal loans available for rural low-income homebuyers

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development still has about $2.8 million in Direct Home Loan funding available for rural low-income homebuyers, officials announced.

Those who are interested need to act quickly before the fiscal year ends.

“If you were wondering whether you can afford to buy a home, check with us and see if you qualify, it cannot hurt to check it out,” said Jeff Glass, the housing program director for USDA Rural Development in Nevada.

The Direct 502 Home Loan Program is available in all areas of the state except Carson City and metropolitan Clark and Washoe counties.

Applicants would work directly with a loan specialist at a regional office. The specialist would ask applicants to fill out a prequalification form. If eligible, the applicant would be provided with an eligibility certificate that prequalifies the applicant with a set loan amount and interest rate.

A prequalification is a two-page form available from the agency’s rural office staff in Elko, Fallon and Las Vegas. In central Nevada call Betty Percifield at 775-423-5124, extension, 100, and in southern Nevada, call Elias Askins at 702-407-1400, extension 113.

The USDA looks for an income that is below 80 percent of the median household income for the county where the homebuyer lives.

Dependable and steady income from employment, a pension or Social Security is required. Although USDA does not specifically review your credit score, poor credit will affect overall eligibility, officials said. As a result, applicants might need to pay off some debts to be eligible. The USDA will require you to take a homeownership education course.

For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov/nv

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