By Tim Leeds
The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently recognized the Havre branch of Western Security Bank for its accomplishments with the USDA Rural Development.
The Havre bank received a letter and certificate of appreciation from the USDA recognizing its efforts and accomplishments in the Rural Development programs.
Lynda Taplin, vice president/branch manager of the Havre bank said Rural Development has two programs. In the Rural Development Guarantee program, no down payment is required for the purchase of a home.
In the Rural Housing Service Single Family Housing Program the administering bank provides part of the loan and Rural Development used direct loans for the rest of the mortgage at lower interest rates.
The program is strictly income driven, and is intended for lower income families.
Western Security has obligated more than $350,000 in guaranteed funds and more than $97,000 in leveraged funds in the Rural Housing Service Single Family program, providing loans for 10 families in the Havre area.
The USDA rural development has partnered with 1,001 families in Montana this past fiscal year to help them buy homes.
Taplin said the rural development program has really come along in the last three years. She said Cindy Stene, Community Development Manager in Great Falls, has been instrumental in getting Havre's Western Security Bank involved in the program. Stene has worked extensively with the bank to get the program in place, Taplin said.
Taplin said the Rural Development programs are a valuable outlet for people buying homes.
"It gets people into a little bigger homes than their income ratios would allow," she said.