First Neighborhood Stabilization Home To Be Sold in Paulsboro
(Paulsboro, NJ) - Gloucester County's Neighborhood Stabilization program will get its first buyer this month when Keith Williams, a laborer from Camden, settles on a newly renovated 1,300 square foot home located on W. Adams Street in Paulsboro.
"Before this renovation, this home was foreclosed and vacant and it was dragging down property values and the neighborhood," said Freeholder Director Stephen M. Sweeney. "Today it is a beautiful home that is going to be owned by someone who will take pride in it and someone who will become a part of the Paulsboro community," Sweeney stated.
The Gloucester County Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP) is being funded with $2.5 million in federal grants to stop blight in several neighborhoods in Paulsboro and Woodbury. In all, 20 homes that were either foreclosed or abandoned are being rehabilitated and sold to qualified applicants.
Freeholder Joseph A. Brigandi Jr. said that three more homes in Paulsboro and two in Woodbury would be ready for settlement in the next 90 days. Paulsboro and Woodbury are the only two municipalities that meet the requirements for the program.
"The people who are buying these homes go through financial counseling and have to qualify for a mortgage. The requirements are rigorous, but it is giving families a chance at home ownership and to become part of the fabric of a community," said Freeholder Brigandi. "They are going to have a vested interest in their neighborhood and that instantly will add to the value of the homes of everyone around them," he said. Freeholder Brigandi is the liaison to the Department of Economic Development and Education.
Keith Williams, 55, said he was excited and appreciative of the opportunity afforded for achieving the American Dream. "This is what you work hard for, to own your own home." Mr. Williams is buying the renovated W. Adams Street for $125,000 and his settlement is scheduled within the next 45 days.
Assemblyman John Burzichelli, Paulsboro's Mayor said that the county and federal investment in the borough helps improve the value of homes. "The Port of Paulsboro is currently under construction and we are going to be seeing more interest in people coming to live here," said Mayor Burzichelli. "I am very pleased that the federal funding is being used for improvements in our community. When you renovate properties in these neighborhoods in makes an instant impact in our housing stock," Burzichelli said.
The Freeholders said six more approved applicants are being matched with homes and that 35 other applicants are awaiting mortgage pre-approval. The homes are deed restricted to prohibit flipping' subletting or renting.
"It is a wonderful thing to be here today and see Mr. Williams as he goes through his journey to home ownership," said Freeholder Director Sweeney. "This is a program that matches people with homes that they can afford and it helps keep our neighborhoods vital," said Sweeney.