Old Kentucky Farm

National Mortgage Professional Magazine Publishes “Home Lending Among the Hollers”

Housing | April 4, 2024

In March 2024, National Mortgage Professional Magazine published an article that sheds light on the challenges of home lending in Appalachia where close-knit, isolated communities face significant economic hurdles despite strong desires for homeownership.

The author of the article, Erica Drzewieki, highlights how Fahe Member organizations Partnership Housing and Clinch-Powell work to bridge the gap, but still face obstacles like red tape, lack of funding, and predatory lending practices. The region’s economic decline, compounded by natural disasters like floods, further exacerbates the situation. Despite these challenges, Fahe Member efforts are improving homeownership for families through a combination of community partnerships, financial education, and investment in infrastructure.

“Home Lending Among the Hollers” contains in-depth coverage of the unique issues faced by the region and lots of insights from the interviewees.

For example, Jim King, CEO of Fahe, emphasizes the need to direct capital to regions where mainstream finance is lacking:

“Capital behaves like water; it flows along the path of least resistance. So when you’re talking about places where the reward isn’t as obvious for capital, you have to make it go there.”

Cassie Hudson, Executive Director of Partnership Housing, highlights the struggles faced by qualified homebuyers due to financial constraints: “If I cannot find gap money unrestricted that doesn’t have to be included as part of the appraisal, I have to deny this family.”

Lindy Turner, Executive Director of Clinch-Powell, discusses the resilience of the Appalachian community despite economic challenges: “But poverty is as much a state of mind as it is an economic and physical thing. We are a people of resilience who always make do.”

Read the article in full here.