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VHFA News

Posted by: admin on April 2, 2003 - 5:44am

BURLINGTON, VT ― More Vermonters are able to take part in Vermont Housing Finance Agency's low-interest mortgage programs now that VHFA has adjusted its income and purchase price limits. "These are some of the largest increases we've made in income and purchase price limits," says Executive Director Sarah Carpenter. "The new numbers mean many more Vermonters fall within VHFA's eligibility requirements, and many more homes are now eligible for VHFA financing. "Still, Vermont's in the midst of a severe housing shortage. These limit changes will help more Vermonters realize their dream of homeownership, but until Vermont's housing stock grows to meet demand, many Vermonters will continue to find homeownership a challenging goal." Income and purchase price limits vary by county and help determine which homebuyers and properties are eligible for VHFA financing. Income limits are ceilings on what households can earn and still qualify for VHFA mortgages; purchase price limits are the maximum price a home can sell for and still be eligible for VHFA financing. VHFA raised the limits in every county on April 1. (See the current limits at www.vhfa.org.) VHFA recently adjusted its mortgage interest rates to a record low: Eligible Vermonters can now get a 30-year zero-point VHFA mortgage loan for just 5.75% (5.75% APR includes zero points only for qualified buyers). VHFA offers a variety of mortgage loan programs, including a cash assistance rate option at a slightly higher rate, which gives buyers cash for downpayment and/or closing costs. Rates are subject to change. For more information about VHFA mortgage programs, homebuyers can visit a participating VHFA lender or go to www.vhfa.org. VHFA was established by the Vermont Legislature in 1974 to finance and promote affordable housing opportunities for low- and moderate-income Vermonters. Since its inception, the agency has helped more than 24,000 households with affordable mortgages and 6,500 families into affordable rental units. 

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Posted by: admin on March 11, 2003 - 9:13am

BURLINGTON, VT  Vermont Housing Finance Agency (VHFA) Executive Director Sarah Carpenter announced today changes to the Agency's Board of Commissioners: New to the Board are John Hall, Vermont Commissioner of Housing and Community Affairs; Paul Beaulieu, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Factory Point National Bank; and Jeb Spaulding, Vermont State Treasurer. Hall is a native Vermonter and business owner whose public involvement dates back to 1976. He served in the Vermont House from 1993 to 1996 and chaired the House Education Committee from 1995 to 1996. He served as the Vermont League of Cities and Towns’ Director and Vice-President from 1991 to 1993 and 1996 to 2000, and sat on the Downtown Development Board from 1998 to 2000. Since 2000, he’s served on the Legislative Reapportionment Board. John has also served on several other boards and committees, including Governor Dean’s Task Force on Act 60, the Judicial Nominating Board, and Lt. Governor Snelling’s “Challenge for Change” task force on education funding. Hall fills the vacancy opened by former Deputy Commissioner of Housing and Community Affairs Kathy Beyer. He is the designee to the Board for Kevin Dorn, Secretary of the Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Affairs. Spaulding served in the Vermont Senate from 1985 to 2000. During that period, he chaired several committees, including the Senate Appropriations Committee, the Joint Fiscal Committee, the Senate Education Committee, and the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules. He was also the Director of Career and Workforce Development at the Vermont Department of Education, Director of the Vermont Academy of Science and Technology at Vermont Technical College, and an adjunct instructor in the Communications Department at Norwich University. Spaulding fills the Board position vacated by Gov. Jim Douglas, Vermont's former State Treasurer. In addition to his position at Factory Point, Beaulieu is a Board of Trustees member and Chairperson of the Finance Committee for Southwestern Vermont Heath Care; a trustee and Vice Chairman of the New England School of Banking at Williams College; a trustee of the Smokey House Center in Danby; and a member of the Bennington County Regional Commission and of the Economic Progress Committee of the Manchester and the Mountains Chamber of Commerce. Beaulieu fills the Board vacancy created by the departure of Karen Moran Lafayette. VHFA’s Board of Commissioners includes three ex-officio members: Hall, Spaulding and Tom Candon, Deputy Commissioner of Banking, who remains on the Board as designee for John Crowley, the new Commissioner for Banking, Insurance, Securities and Health Care Administration. Four at large members are appointed by the Governor, representing private and public lending, real estate, and housing development interests. Those members are Chairperson Lisa Mitiguy Randall, Director of Development, Mater Christi School, Burlington; Vice-Chair Gus Seelig, Executive Director, Vermont Housing and Conservation Trust Fund; Dagyne Canney, Principal Broker, Vermont Real Estate Sales Company; and Beaulieu. VHFA was established by the Vermont Legislature in 1974 to finance and promote affordable housing opportunities for low- and moderate-income Vermonters. Since its inception, the agency has helped more than 24,000 households with affordable mortgages and 6,500 families into affordable rental units. 

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Posted by: admin on February 5, 2003 - 8:03am

BURLINGTON – To celebrate Homeownership Week, Vermont Housing Finance Agency is giving a boost to homeownership across Vermont. VHFA Executive Director Sarah Carpenter announced today that VHFA has increased income and purchase price limits for its homeownership programs in most areas of the state. In addition, VHFA is introducing a special rate option to help home buyers with cash for down payment and closing costs, often major obstacles faced when buying a home. The interest rates are the result of a bond sale last month for its homeownership programs, resulting in rates as low as 6.2%, Carpenter said. Over $30 million in low-interest rate funds are assisting approximately 400 Vermont families and individuals purchase homes. The Cash Assistance rate option is available at a 30-year fixed rate of 7.0% throughout Vermont. This rate option provides cash at closing of up to 3% of the mortgage amount with no repayment required. Carpenter said, “The Cash Assistance funds will allow Vermonters who otherwise could not become home buyers to reach their dream of homeownership through this affordable option.” “VHFA’s low interest rates in all its homeownership programs will give new homeowners significant purchasing power.” For instance, a household earning $45,500 can now afford a $135,000 purchase price (at VHFA’s rate of 6.5% with 0 points), an increase in purchasing power of $8,500 when compared with other mortgage programs, Carpenter explained. Again this year, VHFA has expanded income limits for every county in Vermont and increased purchase price eligibility limits for many counties in Vermont where home prices have risen substantially in the past year. The income limit increases will boost homeownership, in particular for economically distressed targeted Vermont counties. “VHFA is committed to making our programs meet the needs of Vermonters who want to buy a home, for both first time and move-up home buyers in areas of the state where the first-time buyer requirement does not apply.” [See tables with complete list of income and purchase price limits for every county.] “Our programs have difficulty keeping up with local conditions in some parts of the state, where personal incomes have grown substantially and home prices escalated quickly. These program enhancements address those local conditions and represent good news in every region of the state, especially in southern Vermont and the red-hot real estate markets in northwest Vermont and the upper Connecticut River valley," Carpenter added. For further information, contact VHFA’s Homeownership Department at 802-864-5743 or contact a local lender. 

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Posted by: admin on February 5, 2003 - 7:59am

BURLINGTON—Vermont Housing Finance Agency has taken two big steps towards helping more Vermonters own their own homes. VHFA today announced the completion of an $81.4 million single-family bond sale and the approval of higher income and purchase-price limits for borrowers. The bond sale provides more than $50 million in low-interest mortgages to finance between 600 and 700 home purchases over the next nine months. About $30 million of the new bond revenue will be used to refund VHFA bonds issued in 1989. The savings from that refund will be used to help keep VHFA’s mortgage loans affordable. The Agency’s interest rate for a 30-year mortgage with no points is 6.5 percent. The higher income and purchase-price limits mean more Vermonters will be eligible for VHFA low-interest loans. “We’re extremely pleased to be able to make the dream of homeownership come true for more Vermonters,” VHFA Executive Director Sarah Carpenter said. “We were able to use a variety of financial tools with this bond sale to keep our interest rates low. And we were able to raise the income and purchase-price limits to give more Vermonters access to our mortgage products.” Carpenter said the new mortgage money and higher limits come at a time when Vermont’s housing shortage is making it harder for many people to find housing they can afford. “Vermont’s housing shortage is pushing prices up,” Carpenter said, “and the federal rules that govern our financing allow us to adjust our limits to take that into account. These new, higher limits better reflect Vermont’s current housing market.” The new income and purchase-price limits vary for different areas of the state. Information is available on VHFA’s website, www.vhfa.org, or through participating local lenders. A list of lenders who offer VHFA products is also located on the website. VHFA was established in 1974 by the Vermont Legislature to finance and promote safe, decent and affordable housing opportunities for low- and moderate-income Vermonters. Since then, the Agency has issued $1.68 billion in single-family and multi-family bonds and notes, providing financing for more than 23,000 homes and 5,200 affordable apartments. 

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Posted by: admin on December 24, 2002 - 5:07am

BURLINGTON, VT  Vermont Housing Finance Agency (VHFA) Executive Director Sarah Carpenter announced today the hiring of Renee Couture of Burlington as Administrative Assistant. Couture provides administrative support to the agency's executive management staff and legal counsel, and provides backup support to the front office. Before joining VHFA, Couture spent more than four years at IDX Systems Corp. in South Burlington, most recently as Senior Software Analyst. Before that she worked four years providing software application support as a Help Desk Consultant at Service Design Associates in Raleigh, N.C. A graduate of the University of Vermont, Couture is pursuing an associate degree in business, with a concentration in financial services, at Community College of Vermont in Burlington. VHFA was established by the Vermont Legislature in 1974 to finance and promote affordable housing opportunities for low- and moderate-income Vermonters. Since its inception, the agency has helped more than 24,000 households with affordable mortgages and nearly 6,000 families into affordable rental units. 

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