Homeownership And Neighborhood Development

How does a city turn blighted and forgotten neighborhoods into vibrant places?

Lansing’s answer is HAND, or Homeownership And Neighborhood Development.

Here’s how it’s working:

  • The Ingham County Land Bank used roughly $200,000 in federal funds to demolish foreclosed homes and rebuild energy-efficient, beautiful homes in their place.
  • With down payment assistance and affordable mortgages to prospective homebuyers with at least $58,700 (individuals) or $83,900 (four-person family) in income, they qualify to purchase these newly rennovated homes for prices as reasonable as $100,000.
  • These rehabs often include features such as vaulted ceilings, modern kitchens and polished cement floors.

HAND began promoting this project in the summer of 2011with a goal for the city and the Landbank to sell 100 homes within the year. Some of the homes will be reserved for individuals and families with much lower incomes. Counseling will also be available for first-time homeowners. The program promotes the idea that homeownership can be a reality for Lansing, appealing to people and families who may feel they cannot afford to buy a home and are wasting money by renting. HAND is more than a quarter of the way to reaching their goal.

The HAND coalition of local government, nonprofit and business leaders is continuing to change the face of Lansing.