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Historic Savannah Foundation tests affordable housing program

Published: Feb. 16, 2022 at 6:05 PM EST
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Affordable housing options are in high demand in the Savannah area. Wednesday, the Historic Savannah Foundation charted a new path to meet that demand.

A house that had been vacant for around 10 years, but in six to eight months’ time, it’ll be an affordable housing option in the Cuyler-Brownville district.

This home on West 39th Street could use a facelift. It suffers from severe fire damage and many housing code violations. That’s where the Historic Savannah Foundation comes in.

“This is really a first for us, because we are renovating a building from start to finish, and then selling it specifically for the purpose of affordable housing,” said Ryan Arvay, Director of Preservation and Historic Properties.

The home will be made available through the City of Savannah’s “Dream Maker” program, which provides assistance to families seeking affordable home loans.

The previous property owners donated the home to the Historic Savannah Foundation, which also helps keeps renovation costs low.

“The fact that it was donated, there was no acquisition cost, really contributes to the affordability of the house. It helps us to make it that much more affordable. "

Arvay says this restoration is an attempt to preserve the homes of the Cuyler-Brownville District, a neighborhood important to Savannah’s Black history.

“We want to really save and maintain the character of the neighborhood, and that includes, most importantly the people who currently live here.”

The home has room for three bedrooms and one bathroom, and could be available to a qualifying family in as soon as six to eight months.

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