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Success Stories

Finally a Homeowner

Ruth O'Neill
Charles McGaa

“As a kid, I moved around a lot and never really had a home to call my own,” said Charles McGaa, new homeowner.

Through a USDA Rural Development 502
Direct Loan, careful planning and support from Oglala Sioux Tribe Partnership for Housing, McGaa’s dream of owning his home own came true on June 5, 2014.

Once he was approved and a home chosen in Pine Ridge, the process of closing on his home began.  This process was long and a little rocky at times as he became the first Tribal Trust land application that has closed with the assistance of a Title
insurance company.  Pennington Title of Rapid City joined in this partnership with Rural
Development to insure, both the buyer and the lender, against any loss arising from problems that may have connected to the title of the property.  This has not been done in the state before where a Rural Development loan was insured by a title company on tribal ground.  It is with this new partnership that Rural Development hopes to cut down the time it takes to close this type of loan.
For many, the thought of owning a home may seem like an impossible dream.  Many organizations on the Pine Ridge Reservation want to change that thought process. A new coalition of housing organizations, known as Sustainable Home Ownership Project.(SHOP), hopes to help others achieve the goal of homeownership on the Reservation. Thunder Valley CDC  along with Lakota Funds, Lakota Federal Credit Union,  OST Partnership for Housing, Mazaska, and OST Housing Authority have joined together to create this one stop housing
collaborative.  By joining together, they will enhance each other’s mission with one common mission to help families into homes.  They will provide credit counseling, housing education and counseling, plus IDA’s—individual deposit accounts to help families save for down payments and closing costs.  Thunder Valley is guiding a neighborhood that will provide lots and homes for 31 single family units.  The collaboration is about
creating an ecosystem of opportunity for potential homeowners on the reservation.  For more information about SHOP or any other services offered, you may call 605-455-2700.

Obligation Amount:
502 Direct Loan
Year(s) of Obligation:
Congressional District:
  • South Dakota: District (at Large)