New homes for veterans in Yonkers

July 12, 2012 1:51:45 PM PDT
Volunteer crews are working feverishly to clean up these abandoned properties and get them ready for renovation. Habitat for Humanity snatched up 5 foreclosed houses on Orchard Avenue and earmarked them for war veterans.

"We're going to put veteran's families in there," says Jim Killoran of Habitat for Humanity Westchester, "Two of them are working for Local 3 as apprentices, so the whole neighborhood will be lifted up."

The homes will be constructed with green materials, solar panels and recycled flooring. Habitat for Humanity will also re-plant the gardens and landscape the properties, which already have a great hilltop view.

Through Habitat for Humanity, eligible veterans will be able to buy the home with a no interest loan and no money down. The goal is to keep their monthly payment under a thousand dollars a month.

Nikki Roushion served in the marines during the Iraq war. Her husband, also a Marine and their children are looking forward to being surrounded by other veterans who understand what they've been through. Through this program, their dream of home ownership can now be realized much sooner than expected.

"We were planning on 5 to 7 years from now," says Roushion. "Even though with the housing market, you never know if you're going to get a loan or if it's going to be high interest. So this is actually going to help us tremendously because we never thought we were going to be homeowners, ever."

There are currently five homes available for veterans. So far, three families have been accepted. Officials hope to have them moved in, within a year. Habitat for Humanity is looking for more abandoned properties in Yonkers to expand the veterans' project.

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