Finding a home: Truckee family realizes dream with town’s first-time assistance program |

Finding a home: Truckee family realizes dream with town’s first-time assistance program

Greyson Howard
Sierra Sun

Greyson Howard/Sierra SunMichelle and Martin Nieves, with their daughters Sabrina, Sara and Sandra Friday afternoon outside their new Glenshire Home. The Nieves were able to buy the home thanks to the town's first-time homebuyer's downpayment assistance program.

TRUCKEE and#8212; For two decades, the Nieves family has lived and worked in Truckee, but couldn’t afford a home.

Martin, a contractor, and Michelle, a U.S. Forest Service employee, spent the last 15 years in Donner Creek Mobile Home park, raising their three daughters, Sabrina, Sara and Sandra.

But with the help of the Town of Truckee, the family finally has a place to call their own.

and#8220;We never thought we’d be able to have our own home in Truckee, but didn’t want to have to relocate to Reno,and#8221; said Michelle Nieves, who recently closed escrow on a home in Glenshire. and#8220;There is no way financially we would have been able to come up with the downpayment without this program.and#8221;

The Nieves are among 27 successful applicants to the town’s First Time Homebuyer’s Downpayment Assistance Program, the $1.56 million project town council approved in November 2009 to give first-time home buyers who live or work in town a better opportunity to own a home.

For Michelle and Martin, the program meant the fulfillment of a long-awaited dream.

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and#8220;Our three daughters were born here, and I went to high school here,and#8221; Michelle Nieves said.

She said the program took a lot of work, but went smoothly, and they were able to close on their home in four months.

The other 26 applicants are in various stages in vying for the $1.56 million in low-interest loans, staff told town council earlier this month. With more residents applying in the moderate income range, and fewer in low income, staff asked at the May 6 town council meet for the board to shift some of those funds around.

That isn’t a bad thing, officials said, as the town will have more opportunities to get funding for low-income households in the future, where as moderate income state and federal funding is harder to gather.

and#8220;It’s been a council priority to reach moderate and above-moderate households, so we see it as a win to try to get them into this program,and#8221; said Community Development Director John McLaughlin.

As of May 6, of the 27 successful applicants, McLaughlin said four had closed on their first homes, and several more were in escrow.

The assistance will be in the form of 2 percent interest, 30-year deferred loans for low- and moderate-income applicants, and a 3 percent, 30-year deferred loan for above-moderate applicants, according to staff reports.

As an example, a family of four making $55,300 a year meets the low income qualification, a family of four making $82,900 meets the moderate level and a family of four at $110,560 hits the above-moderate level, according to staff reports.