Fort Myers Redevelopment Agency to provide help to homeowners who need repairs

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Posted at 11:46 AM, Apr 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-29 11:48:17-04

LEE COUNTY, Fla. — The Fort Myers Community Redevelopment Agency has help available for homeowners who need repairs done on their homes.

Fort Myers Redevelopment Agency (CRA) and Habitat for Humanity of Lee and Hendry Counties are teaming up to help families.

The program will help preserve homes that have been cited for repeated code violations and potential safety hazards. Owners must live in the homes, meet income requirements and pass a background check.

The first phase of the program will target houses in the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (MLK) redevelopment areas.

The Home Preservation Program will help homeowners repair or replace roofs, secure exterior electrical services, make landscape and irrigation improvements, repair gutters, and remove junk vehicles and yard debris.

The CRA will identify a list of eligible homes and provide funding, and Habitat for Humanity will work with homeowners to apply for the program, assure requirements are met, and determine what repairs are needed. Habitat will do the repair work using staff, local subcontractors, and volunteers.

To qualify for the program homeowners must meet the following criteria:

  • Low income (below 80 percent of the area median income).
  • Have no tax liens against their property.
  • Be current with their mortgages and live in their homes.
  • All adult members of the household must pass criminal background checks.

For projects costing more than $5,000, homeowners will have to sign off on a lien on their property that would be forgiven after five years.

If the homeowner sells the house or refinances before five years, the repair costs would have to be repaid.

Eligible homeowners will qualify for up to $25,000 worth of repairs.

The CRA has budgeted $250,000 for this phase of the program, which was approved by the City Council in February.