Middleton Realty, Inc.'s Blog
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) offers multiple housing assistance programs for people hoping to achieve home ownership.
In spite of being offered by the USDA, you don’t need to be a farmer or rancher of any kind to qualify for a home loan. Similarly, you don’t have to buy a home miles from civilization--many popular, thickly-settled suburbs across the country also qualify for USDA programs.
In this article, we’re going to explain the different programs offered by the USDA, how to check your eligibility, how to find out which locations qualify, and how to get started with a loan.
USDA Assistance Programs
The USDA offers two types of home loans for prospective buyers. The direct program, or Section 502 Direct Loan Program, is designed to help low-income persons to acquire safe, affordable housing. The assistance for this loan comes in the form of a subsidy that can be applied directly to the applicant’s mortgage, reducing monthly mortgage payments for a certain period of time.
Another type of home loan offered by the USDA is the Single Family Home Guarantee. Much like an FHA or first-time homeowner’s loan, this type of mortgage is insured by the government. As a result, buyers can often qualify for lower interest rates and smaller down payments from their lenders.
Guarantees may be applied towards the purchase, rebuilding, or building of a rural home as an incentive to developing rural areas. Later, we’ll talk about what is considered “rural.”
Outside of help with buying homes, the USDA also provides grants and loans for repairing and modernizing rural homes.
Who is eligible for USDA mortgage assistance?
In general, those applying for USDA assistance must meet certain criteria. Applicants must meet income eligibility, be a U.S. citizen or qualified noncitizen, and must purchase a qualifying property.
For the Direct loan program, applicants must be without safe or sanitary housing and be unable to secure housing through other means. Whereas for USDA guaranteed loans, applicants need only fall under the maximum income limit.
To find out if you’re eligible immediately, fill out an eligibility form from the USDA.
How do I know which houses qualify?
Generally speaking, homes located within large, metropolitan cities won’t qualify for USDA loans. However, suburbs just outside of some larger cities often do. For example, towns located just a half hour’s drive outside of Boston have a good chance of being eligible.
To view the map of property eligibility, simply fill out the online eligibility form.
How Do I Get Started?
If you’re seeking a direct loan, you’ll have to contact your local Rural Development office. Applications for a direct loan are accepted year-round and are awarded based on funding availability.
For people looking for a private loan guaranteed by the USDA, applicants should contact an approved lender in the area. The lender will then work with the USDA loan specialist in your state.
When you move into a house, the aisles of paint at the hardware store can seem awfully overwhelming. How will you ever choose a color for each area of your home? Adding color to a home is part of what will make it your own. One of the last things that you may think of is the color of your front door. Instead of painting the entire exterior of your home, it might be a good idea to look at your front door.
It’s not a sin to think outside of the box when it comes to the color of your front door. Why not let your house stand out from the crowd? There’s many different colors that pop out and make great additions to any front door. We’ll break down some of the great possibilities for your front door here.
Red is a great color because it goes well with many neutral tones. It brings a bit of life to a sometimes rather bland exterior color of the home. You can put a red door on a home that is a shade of tan, gray, or even white. Keep in mind that there’s also many different shades of red for you to choose from that allow you to find the tone and feel that works for you.
Yellow Or Orange
You can certainly welcome visitors with a touch of cheeriness right at your front door. Yellow brings a certain kind of warmth to the entrance of your home. Yellow goes well with white, grays, tans, even brick and stone exteriors.
Orange needs to be used carefully. With the right tones surrounding it, you can make use of orange on your front door to make your home a bit more welcoming. Shades of orange work well with grays, blues, greens, and white exteriors.
Earthy Tones: Green And Blue
Green and blue are great colors to help your home stand out from the crowd and provide a touch of style and warmth right at the front door. There are so many shades of green to choose from. You can go with a light green such as mint or lime. You can also choose a darker shade of green like olive or avocado.
Green shades on a door pair well with whites, browns, tans, stone, cream, grays, and even shades of blue.
Blue is often a color that we use more indoors. There’s so many different shades of blue that are available. Blue doors pair well with an exterior that is gray, white, tan, stone, brick, or gray.
You can really use the front door of your home as an element of surprise. When you think of what colors go together, it’s hard to go wrong with a bold front door.
Your living room is one of the most used rooms of the house. It’s where the family gathers and company comes to chat. If the furniture in your living room is not arranged comfortably, then you may not enjoy the space as much as you should. Heed the tips below in order to get the furniture in the living room is arranged for comfort and practicality.
See How Conversations Will Play Out
You want your living room to be a place where face-to-face conversation actually thrives. Even in the age of the smartphone, people still like a certain kind of connection with one another. Make sure that food and drinks will be in easy reach and that the seating is arranged in a way that allows everyone to be involved with a conversation.
Use Dividing Factors
If you have a large living room, you’ll need to divide the space with either a room separation apparatus or a piece of furniture. Using furniture actually keeps the room cozy and free from feeling stuffy. If the living room bleeds into another room with an open floor plan, this becomes especially important. Use a sofa, and allow it to face away from the dining area in order to divide the conversation spaces and keep your home’s interior design flowing.
Use A Focal Point
Most living rooms have a TV or a fireplace, or both. You can keep both on the same wall, or create separate spaces for both activities in order to have some division in the room. There are many different strategies that can be used in order to keep both the fireplace and the television in the same space without making a dizzying focal point.
Think Outside The Box
By arranging your furniture at a diagonal, or different angle than simple straight lines, you’ll be able to give your living room some flavor. First, set the sofa and the coffee table, then create the rest of the space around these establishing angles. This will make the room feel bigger and give it a sense of symmetry with flavor.
Matching Furniture Gives Flow
By getting matching sofas, chairs, and side tables, you’ll be able to create a sense of symmetry in the room. The way you arrange the furniture ultimately depends on your needs and tastes, but you’ll have a few anchoring pieces to work with that will allow you to make the living room your canvas and your furniture your subjects. Have fun playing with the layout and design of the room. There’s really no right or wrong answers, just simply what will make you happy and what looks good in the space.