Supporting Affordable Home Ownership
The median cost of single-family homes in Freeport for many years has risen faster than the median family income, creating a significant problem of housing affordability. Young families in particular find it very difficult to find a home in the community where they were raised. Working families have been priced out of the homeownership market and the majority of Freeport homeowners could not afford to buy the house they own at current prices. The real estate crash in 2008 provided some relief on housing prices, but during the time of lower prices it was very difficult for most families to get a mortgage loan. Prices are again rising faster than incomes; the cost of homeownership remains a significant issue in Freeport.
Freeport Housing Trust has been involved in several initiatives to promote home ownership. These include the purchase of Wardtown Park, where all of the residents own their own mobile home. In May of 2015 FHT sold Wardtown Park to a Resident’s Cooperative, so that the home owners now own the land under their homes. FHT has also helped first-time homebuyers purchase condominium units, selling a total of 9 condo units in two developments at prices affordable to low-income buyers. FHT holds resale restrictions on these condo units so that they will remain affordable long-term. A third homeownership initiative of FHT has been in support of Habitat for Humanity. Taking advantage of tax-acquired property made available by the Town of Freeport, FHT created two house lots that were donated to Habitat and developed with two new homes.