Southwest Solutions is transitioning 60 former rental properties in the Newberry community to affordable homeownership. Newberry is an 8-block area in the Chadsey-Condon neighborhood in southwest Detroit. Current renters have priority in taking advantage of this opportunity. The Newberry program is supported through a generous donation from the Sam L. and Judith G. Yaker Fund.
The 60 single-family houses that Southwest Solutions acquired in Newberry were built by a developer two decades ago with Low-Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) to provide affordable rental housing for low to moderate income families. The LIHTC compliance period expired recently, creating the unique opportunity for those who had been renting to become homeowners.
The purchase price for a Newberry home is currently $69,000. This may increase in response to market conditions. Thanks to a $2.5M grant from the Sam L. and Judith G. Yaker Fund, all the homebuyers receive down payment assistance, and eligible homebuyers receive up to $20,000 as a conditional grant. The grant is forgiven once the homeowner has lived in the home for five years. Newberry homebuyers sign 15-year mortgages. The monthly mortgage payments, including taxes and insurance, are generally and often significantly less than what the households had been paying in rent. Thus, the Newberry initiative is truly an affordable homeownership program.
Each Newberry resident interested in owning the home must complete a Homebuyer Services class at Southwest Solutions. The prospective homebuyer may also need to work with a Southwest Solutions’ financial counselor to improve the homebuyer’s credit score. Both the Homebuyer Education class and the financial counseling are free for Newberry homebuyers.
Homeownership is still the primary way for families to build wealth in our country. Homeownership is also vital to stabilize and advance neighborhoods in our city. The Newberry affordable homeownership program is an innovative model to uplift families and the neighborhood in which they reside. Southwest Solutions strongly believes that the success of this model has important implications for revitalizing other neighborhoods in Detroit.
Special thanks to the HBA Charitable & Educational Foundation for its generous grant supporting our Newberry initiative.
Information for Newberry residents
If you are a Newberry resident interested in taking advantage of this affordable homeownership opportunity, please download this letter that describes the steps to purchase your home. To download a schedule of our Homebuyer Education classes this year, click below. You can register for a Homebuyer Eduction class at this link.
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There will be 60 new mortgages in Newberry.
Before our Newberry initiative, there were no new mortgages in the census tract that includes Newberry for two decades.
The Newberry homeowners are investing in their neighborhood and its success, and this investment creates momentum to revitalize the community and spur additional investment.
On Neighborhood Beautification Day in 2019, 150 volunteers, including many Newberry residents, worked in teams to clean up vacant lots, clear overgrown brush, paint porches of new homeowners, and do minor landscaping.