"Free Money" for Seniors, Hempstead Town Launches Interest-Free Home Improvement Loan Program's New Phase

Standing in front of a beautifully upgraded Bellmore single-family house, Supervisor Anthony J. Santino kicked-off a new phase of Hempstead Town’s Senior Citizen Home Improvement Program.  Accompanied by Thomas and Joyce Fox, the Supervisor detailed the initiative, which provides interest-free home improvement loans to qualifying senior citizens for house upgrades and repairs such as roofs, siding, windows, home heating systems and more.  Especially unique about the program is the fact that the loan does not have to be repaid until the home is sold or transferred…it’s like “free money.”  Also present at the program briefing were Councilwoman Erin King Sweeney and Councilman Anthony D’Esposito.

“It can be difficult for senior citizens, many of whom are living on fixed incomes, to make ends meet,” stated Santino.  “Through the Hempstead Town Senior Home Improvement Program we are making it possible for mature residents confronted with our region’s high-cost of living to upgrade their houses and remain in the communities they love.”

Announcing the new phase of the home improvement program, Supervisor Santino detailed some of the upgrades financed through the initiative at the Fox’s home.  Enhancements, which were funded through a Federal Community Development Block Grant, include vinyl siding, gutters, leaders, soffits, fascias and a gas home heating furnace.  The Supervisor explained that the program, which is administered through the Town’s Department of Planning and Economic Development, provides for a one-time loan for eligible senior citizens.  Repayment of the loan is due when the home is transferred or sold, eliminating the pressures of monthly loan payments for program participants.

“One of the best features of Hempstead Town’s Senior Citizen Home Improvement Program is the fact that the loans for home upgrades are interest-free,” announced Santino.  “What’s more, the fact that the loan repayment does not come due until the house is sold, removes the pressure of monthly loan payments for seniors who participate in this program…it’s like “free money.”

The Town’s Department of Planning and Economic Development determines eligibility, assists applicants with the required paperwork and inspects the property and makes suggestions for improvements that might be made.  In addition, they give a complete construction write-up and estimate, assist in obtaining bids from approved contractors, inspect the work while in progress and certify that the work has been completed properly before issuing final payment to the contractor. 

“The Town’s Planning Department helps seniors with the application process, making the Home Improvement Program stress free,” said King Sweeney.  “The use of town approved contractors and thorough inspections of the work performed by town staff ensure quality workmanship,” added D’Esposito.

A variety of factors comprise the program’s eligibility criteria.  The income limits range from $61,050 through $115,150, depending on family size.  Additionally, the applicant must own and live at the house.  The geographic area covered by the program encompasses all non-incorporated areas of the Town of Hempstead.  Other program criteria apply.  Finally, the program is open to residents aged 62 and over.

Hempstead Town is a great place to live, and our Senior Citizen Home Improvement Program is helping mature neighbors to be able to remain in the communities they love while making needed home repairs and upgrades,” concluded Santino.

For more information and to learn eligibility requirements, Hempstead Town residents can call the Department of Planning and Economic Development at (516) 538-7100.