USDA Investing in Farmers and their Families through Affordable Housings Funds

Nov 04, 2014


Low income Farmers and their families may receive support from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) through programs that provide affordable housing to farm laborers. The USDA is providing $29 million through the Farm Housing Loan and Grant program for the development of housing and support systems to strengthen rural communities, as well as financial assistance to help farm families meet their monthly living expenses.

Announced October 30, 2014, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has said the program improves the lives of farm workers, strengthens rural economies and provides a brighter future for children in farm families. Funds may be used by housing developers, individuals or organizations in the agriculture industry to purchase housing locations, development or leasehold interest sites, as well financing for housing construction, day care facilities, community rooms, and household furnishings. Funds may also be used for the payment of interest from construction loans. Grants may cover up to 90 percent of development costs and loans may last for 33 years at 1 percent interest rates. Conditions and obligations may change and are dependent on agreed upon terms.

Financing is available to qualified organizations approved by the USDA for the development of housing used by domestic farm laborers. The USDA has also agreed to provide rental assistance to very-low-income families to meet their monthly housing expenses. Rental assistance will also extend to 315 of the new housing units. Funds will be available in six states and 10 programs, with $20.3 million available as loans and $8.3 million will be provided as grants. At completion, new homes will be available for 320 farm families.

The Farm Labor Housing and Grants program provides capital financing for the development of housing used by domestic farm laborers. Loans are available to farmers, family farm corporations, associations of farmers, non-profit organizations, Indian tribes, and public agencies. They can be used to build, repair, improve or buy housing for farm laborers, as well as individuals and their families who work in aquaculture and on-farm processing.

Visit Farm Labor Housing Loan and Grant for information on states and projects eligible for financial assistance.