Under the Town of Granby’s Housing Rehabilitation Program, the Town can provide Granby homeowners with the money necessary to pay for a wide variety of home repairs. The Town obtains the money from the State of Connecticut, under the Small Cities program. The State receives the money from the Federal Government under the Community Development Block Grant program. Since 1990, the Town has obtained almost $2 million through these programs; the vast majority of which has gone towards Housing Rehabilitation.
Under this program, the Town first meets with the homeowner to discuss the needed repairs. Often it is the individual homeowner who suggests the majority of the desired repairs, while the town asks that other repairs be made which relate to housing and building code requirements. Repairs regularly include such items as roofing, siding, insulation and windows, as well as bathroom and kitchen remodeling, and the upgrading of plumbing, electrical and heating services. The program allows for the repair and replacement of private septic systems and wells, but does not allow for the construction of additions.
Once the homeowner and the Town agree on what repairs are desirable and fundable, the Town prepares a complete specification for all of the repairs and puts the work out to bid. Construction contractors throughout the area bid on the work, the low-bid is established and the contractor, following a review of the qualifications, is hired. Once the construction begins, the improvements are continuously reviewed, as progress is made. The contractor receives final payment after all work is completed and accepted by the Town and the homeowner. All payments are prepared by the Town and made payable to both the homeowner and the contractor. This provides that the homeowner must review, agree and sign all payments before the contractor actually receives payment.
All homeowners are required to reimburse the Town for the contracted cost of the improvements. However, homeowners are not necessarily required to make monthly payments to the Town of Granby to cover this cost. In most cases, a lien is placed on the property in the land records of the Town Hall, outlining the specific amount of money that was spent to make the repairs. At such time that the home is sold or otherwise transferred the Town is repaid for the costs expended in repairing the homes. No interest is charged.
To be eligible for this program the income of the homeowner must not exceed certain limits established by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development. For example, a single person cannot have an income of more than $39,550; a 3-person household can make a maximum of $50,850, the 5-person household $61,000 and a 6-person household $65,550. Income limitations for all size households are available and applications can be obtained from the Office of Community Development or through the Social Services office.
The federal funds that are used to pay the costs of the repairs are eventually returned to the Town of Granby when the property is sold or the mortgage is repaid. These funds can be used to continue the program or for a variety of other eligible activities.
Since the start of the Granby Housing Rehabilitation Program over 70 homes in the town have been improved, updated, repaired and modified. Current funding for the program should carry the Town into 2005. Anyone interested in learning more about the program is encouraged to call the Granby Town Hall at (860) 844-5319.