VHFA creates affordable housing and jobs through HARP program

By: Leslie Black-Plumeau

This month marks the completion of three years of Vermont’s Housing Acquisition & Rehabilitation Program (HARP)—a program that has helped renovate 55 homes as of March 31, 2012, including the historic St. Albans colonial purchased by first-time homebuyers, Meghan and Joseph Swan.  The purchase was the culmination of their quest to buy a home for their active family of five, made possible with help from VHFA, Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD) and Champlain Housing Trust (CHT).

Under the HARP program, VHFA works with Champlain Housing Trust and four other HomeOwnership Centers throughout Vermont to acquire, rehabilitate and re-market foreclosed homes. The 4-bedroom home purchased by the Swan family needed extensive renovations after foreclosure including a new roof, weatherization, new kitchen cabinets and countertops, refinishing wood floors, new bath and kitchen flooring and chimney repair. The home also received a new range, new dishwasher, new refrigerator, new furnace, new tub and bathroom appliances before being placed on the market.

Since June 2009, VHFA has fully restored 35 homes and sold them to income-eligible Vermonters. Another 4 are under contract with new home buyers, with 16 that are either for sale now or in various stages of renovation that will be available for sale in the very near future. Most homes can be viewed on VHFA's web site

Read the full press release.

Upper: The Swan Family.
Lower: The Swan's home in St. Albans, purchased through the HARP program.