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Appleton loan program for low-income owners aims to improve homes

Posted at 4:56 PM, Mar 18, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-18 17:56:55-04

APPLETON (NBC 26) — Home improvements are expensive, but the city of Appleton wants to help offset some upfront costs.

  • A loan program through the city of Appleton offers no-interest loans to homeowners.
  • Low-income homeowners are eligible for the program.
  • An Appleton contractor shares the importance of keeping up with homes for the homeowner and the neighborhood.

(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story)

The city of Appleton wants to help homeowners maintain their homes so they’re offering loans to low-income families to make improvements. I’m your Appleton neighborhood reporter Olivia Acree explaining how the program works.

For decades, the city of Appleton has offered the homeowner rehabilitation loan program. But amid inflation, some homeowners may need it now more than ever.

“We saw that massive spike in all material costs, and we haven’t ever really seen them come down,” said Andy Nickols, Nickols Roofing owner.

Nickols Roofing owner Andy Nickols says as a contractor in Appleton, he sees the impact of higher costs.

“It does affect the decision-making because it’s harder to afford it, but it only gets worse the longer you wait,” said Nickols.

The city of Appleton says the no-interest loans help low-income homeowners make needed fixes.

“New roof, new siding, new windows, or certain improvements to the electrical HVAC, or plumbing;” said David Kress, Appleton Community and Economic Development.

David Kress with Community and Economic Development says loan amounts vary case by case and the program is about helping the homeowner, but he says it also has a positive impact on our neighborhoods.

“By making small investments in individual properties, it can have a ripple effect throughout the neighborhood and encourage additional investment in those neighborhoods,” said Kress.

Nickols says he sees how the lack of investment can hurt our neighborhoods.

“When things aren’t kept up it affects your property values and the property values of everybody around you,” said Nickols.

Through the program, the city says it wants to promote strong and sturdy neighborhoods.

“The beauty of the fact that it’s a revolving loan program is that as the loans are repaid it does make additional funds available for future applicants,” said Kress.

You can apply until April 19th. You can find more information on the city’s website.