Editorial by Patricia Dominguez, USDA Rural Development State Director
In the past year across rural New Mexico, we’ve helped people like Brian Downing and Scholastica Gaong from Bernalillo, N.M. buy a house so they could make a home for their family.
As I travel around rural New Mexico, I’ve seen how USDA’s housing programs can lift entire families up and make dreams come true.
We’ve done it time and time again. Through the years, USDA Rural Development has helped nearly 5 million families and individuals across the country achieve the dream of homeownership.
In New Mexico, we have worked hard to extend this opportunity to everyone in our rural communities.
We know that expanding opportunities for homeownership strengthens our rural communities and helps families and individuals build wealth and achieve financial stability.
That’s why, each year during June, USDA Rural Development celebrates Homeownership Month by sharing success stories and the resources we have available to help people in rural communities and on Tribal lands buy, repair, build and rent homes.
USDA Rural Development has many resources to support affordable housing and help rural residents create a path to a better future – especially in historically underserved communities that need our help now more than ever. And well-built, affordable housing is essential to the vitality of every community.
Under the leadership of President Biden, Vice President Harris and Agriculture Secretary Vilsack, USDA is making sure rural and Tribal communities – especially those that have been overlooked in the past – have equitable access to resources to become homeowners and get access to affordable, safe and decent rental housing.
This kind of support is critical as residents of rural communities face rising housing costs and other economic challenges. That’s why President Biden recently announced a plan to increase the affordable housing stock throughout the country, especially in rural areas. USDA is supporting this vision in a variety of ways.
The Biden-Harris Administration already has invested $26 billion to help nearly 150,000 people in rural and Tribal communities buy, repair and build homes through USDA Rural Development’s Single Family Housing Programs. That includes helping more than 35,000 families and individuals living in socially vulnerable communities become homeowners.
We also recognize that homeownership is one of many options – different families have different needs. Renting allows for flexibility, an especially valuable benefit at many stages of a person’s life. USDA offers rental assistance that can free up more income for families to build wealth or to give back to their communities.
Whether you own or rent a home, you become invested in and connected to where you live.
USDA will continue to expand the reach of our housing programs so that everyone in rural New Mexico and across rural America has an opportunity to find a home they deserve, one that fits with whatever stage of life they find themselves.
Join us as we celebrate the people we’ve helped and as we extend a hand to others in rural America who may need this life-changing assistance from USDA.
You can learn more about our housing resources by visiting our website or by calling 505-761-4950.