South Florida Sun Sentinel: Federal stimulus money allows Tamarac mom to buy first home:
Even though she sees the pain of people struggling in this economy, Staci Gullett is poised to take a leap of faith.
Gullett, 28, who works for the state unemployment office, deals all day long with people who sob on the telephone as they beg her to push their benefits through.
But she's also seeing firsthand the benefits of a federal grant project meant to ease the nation's economic pain by getting distressed houses off the market and giving or lending people money to spend on them.
Gullett will become one of Broward's first recipients of the Neighborhood Stabilization Program, the national housing rescue plan to help cities and states flip foreclosed homes, rent them out, or dole out grants to first-time home buyers. On June 19 she's closing on her first housing purchase, a two-bedroom with hardwood floors in Tamarac.
All I did was rent," Gullett said. "To buy my own home, it's wonderful. And I'll have a back yard."
In Broward and Palm Beach counties, dozens of local governments have been awarded a total of $104 million to turn abandoned, foreclosed properties into occupied, tax-producing dwellings.
Tamarac has $4.7 million to spend on down-payment assistance in some neighborhoods, such as Heathgate-Sunflower, Westwood, Mainlands, Vanguard Village and Concord Village.
Gullett is a single mother of a 1-year-old daughter, Madison. With a salary "in the 20s" as a clerk for the state unemployment office, she meets the program's income guidelines.
The house in the Mainlands neighborhood will cost her $133,000. The city, through a grant, is chipping in $91,300...
Details on the city's assitance program can be found on their web site.