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Self-Help Housing

Technical Assistance

NeighborGood Partners Self-Help Housing Team provides technical and management assistance to organizations in the 21-state northeast region that are operating, or plan to operate, self-help housing programs in their community.


Working together to build a home

A partner in Rural Development

Self-Help Housing Director

Jill Lordan


Technical & Management Services

  • Application review

  • Training for all staff positions

  • Grants and financial management

  • Participation in grant progress and review meetings

  • SHARES database training; problem solving

  • Quarterly newsletters

  • Networking opportunities

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About the Program

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Mutual Self-Help Housing program consists of families working together to build their own homes. With the assistance of a skilled staff, an association of generally 4 to 10 families is formed. These families provide at least 65% of the labor necessary to build the homes.

Most families use Rural Development's 502 Homeownership Loan Program to finance their homes. This is a low-interest loan based on the family's income and is available to low- and very low-income families in rural areas with good credit history. The families generally save between $10,000 and $30,000 in housing costs using this sweat equity method.

The sponsor organization receives a Section 523 Self-Help Housing Technical Assistance Grant from Rural Development to operate the self-help program. The nonprofit grantee takes on the responsibilities of training the families in construction as well as homeownership skills, keeping the families' loan records, ordering the construction materials, choosing the sites and house plans, recruiting the families and keeping them motivated throughout the construction process.


Our Region

Families Working Together, Building a Future

Plus, read the latest issue of the Self-Helper newsletter for program updates and more! 

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Learn more, visit Self-Help Housing SPOTLIGHT  >>

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