Economic Security Corporation has paired with the City of Joplin since 2008 to manage the HOME Consortium Repair Program, and after renewal of funding this program will continue. This provided funding allows Economic Security Corporation to continue the Homeowner Rehabilitation Program specifically.
The City of Joplin’s HOME Consortium breaks down to include more areas than just Joplin, who are all eligible to take part in the Homeowner Rehabilitation Program. This program focuses on assisting low to moderate income residents with needed repairs on their homes.
Thomas Walters, city planner, said areas eligible for the program include Joplin, Webb City, Carl Junction, Airport Drive, Carthage, Unincorporated Jasper County, Oronogo, Duquesne, Neck City, and Sarcoxie.
“… So, we collectively receive funding from housing and urban development from the HOME program,” Walters said. “Funds can be used to improve housing for income-eligible either home-buyers or homeowners in this case. So, the homeowner rehabilitation program has been going on for quite some time, which we help fund with our HOME funds throughout the consortium to improve homes, bring them up to code. These tend to be rather substantial improvements. Economic Security Corporation prioritizes homeowners of highest distress … and it is one of the few resources that we have currently available to stabilize homes in the surrounding neighborhoods that otherwise would not see these repairs without the program.”
The Joplin HOME Consortium Repair Program is one of two rehabilitation programs through Economic Security Corporation. This program is specifically for income-qualifying homeowners. Specific qualifications can be found on Economic Security Corporation’s website. Their website states that services may include repairs or replacements from roofing and drainage, to electrical and plumbing, and more.
“They would apply to Economic Security Corporation’s HOME repair program,” Walters said. “There’s actually more than one avenue of funding for this program because there’s two funding sources they principally use. We’re actually able to address homes in slightly worse condition with the HOME funds compared to the other source of funds, so we tend to address those with the HOME program.”
One aspect the HOME program focuses on is affordability, by providing those in lower income levels “necessary but costly repairs.” Though, Walters said that this program not only works to benefit the homeowner but also the neighborhood as a whole.
“In particular, there’s been lots of examples where you have neighborhoods because of the circumstances of a particular homeowner it is a home that is in decline, where the rest of the neighborhood may not be, and so it benefits the whole neighborhood—stabilizes kind of the marketability and so forth. And especially where some of our consortium partners that have—I listed a lot of places that are part of the consortium—there’s a lot of aging housing but not necessarily a lot of housing starts, new construction …”