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Home for the Holidays: A Pennsylvania Mom's Story

Posted by Dawn Bonsell, Rural Development, Pennsylvania in Rural
Feb 21, 2017
Misty Allen (right), her daughter Deanna and puppy Odysseus are ready for family and friends to share the holidays in their new home. (USDA photo)
Misty Allen (right), her daughter Deanna and puppy Odysseus are ready for family and friends to share the holidays in their new home. (USDA photo)

A year ago this week, Misty Allen and her daughter Deanna came home to the American Dream they thought would forever be out of reach.

“It was magical!” said Allen. “This house is more than I could ever have asked for. I never imagined I could have a three-bedroom house for less than I was paying in rent.”

Flooded out of their most recent apartment and facing a significant rent increase to offset repairs, Allen learned about Rural Development’s 502 Direct Home Loan Program through her local Realtor. Just before Christmas, she and Deanna settled into their picturesque Athens, Pa., neighborhood, their new puppy Odysseus joining Loki, the mischievous German Shepherd, in the mix.

Allen says she wants other rural folks – especially women – to know about USDA’s Housing programs. Not just because she, Deanna and their fur family have a roof over their heads, but also because to her, the house truly is the ‘gift that keeps on giving.’

“Just like the Grinch, my heart swelled three times bigger when we got this house!” the single mom laughed. “When my daughter was younger, I worked three jobs. Finally having a place to call our own made my self-confidence go through the roof. This is my dream come true: to have my own house and a house for my daughter and grandchildren to come to in the future. Our home is large enough to host family gatherings now. That means the world to me.”

Recently announced changes to the Single Family Housing Guaranteed Loan Program will increase the availability of rural home loans. Beginning in September 2014, many currently ineligible lenders, including small community banks and credit unions, will be able to underwrite loans guaranteed by Rural Development.

USDA’s Rural Housing Service has helped rural residents purchase homes since 1949. Since the start of the Obama Administration, we have helped more than 750,000 rural Americans buy homes with Direct and Guaranteed loans.  Additionally, we help nearly a half million others with affordable rental housing each year. For more information, contact your local Rural Development office.

Category/Topic: Rural

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Dec 19, 2013

I did my parents Vietnam vets lost their home for your Freedom