Self-help home builder buys 1.5 acres in Carson City

A self-help home builder has secured 1.5 acres in east Carson City as its first urban project for families who have the time to build, rather than the money for the down payment.

Ron Trunk, chief executive officer of Citizens for Affordable Homes, said Wednesday the nonprofit organization closed escrow on the land at Gordon and Brown streets for $556,000. The seller is Evelyn Westsmith. Up to 32 self-help homes can be built on the property, which is at 3679 Gordon St. and 1630,1636 Brown St.

"The goal of the organization is to develop affordable town homes with family living in mind," he said. "Initial projections are for two- and three-bedroom models to range in price from $140,000 to $160,000."

Citizens for Affordable Homes' board of directors decided to pursue an urban project in Carson City about a year ago, Trunk said. This project is independent from the organization's work with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which doesn't provide grants to build in areas with a population more than 50,000.

Western Nevada Home Consortium allocated $1.3 million to the self-help home builder for this Carson City project. Trunk said they bought the land using those funds and will request $450,000 to use for infrastructure, engineering and the architectural plans. The remaining amount, which could be as much as $300,000, could be used to purchase land adjacent to the 1.5 acres for more homes.

Trunk said the organization is in negotiations with land owners.

"When we break ground is in the hands of the (city). It's up to the (city) to approve the plans. We are projecting to start building construction on homes in June."

Since potential homeowners cannot take out a loan from the USDA, private lenders will have to step forward, he said.

"We will look to local private lenders to provide the construction loan for the families and the permanent financing."

Those who qualify for the self-help program will assist in building their home, rather than make a down payment. Home builders must have an acceptable credit record, according to the bank selected to provide the construction loan. An income requirement must also be met.

To qualify, a single person must not make more than $40,000 a year. The income of a family of two cannot exceed $44,000. A family of three must make less than $49,000. A family of four must make less than $54,000.

So far 10 families are interested in the program, Trunk said. The organization will begin taking applications in January. For information call its office at 883-7101.

n Contact reporter Becky Bosshart at or 881-1212.


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment