Farm Worker Housing Loan Funds Available
Farm Credit East encourages farm businesses to consider seeking funds for farm worker housing construction and improvement from the New York State Farm Worker Housing (FWH) Loan Program. These funds are available to New York agricultural producers, including fruit, vegetable and dairy operations.
“The New York State Farm Worker Housing loan program has been a tremendous tool for farms seeking to improve housing for their farm laborers,” said Mike Haycook, Farm Credit East vice president and coordinator of the NYS FWH program. “Without the use of these loan proceeds, many of the farms would not have been able to provide quality housing and would have been at a disadvantage when hiring farm laborers.”
The FWH Loan program is administered by Farm Credit East in partnership with New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR), and provides no-interest loans to help finance improvement of existing housing or the construction / purchase of new housing for farm workers.
Darryl C. Towns, Commissioner/CEO of HCR said, “New York is an agricultural state and we must do all we can to help the industry thrive. Since 1995, the Farm Worker Housing Loan Program has been helping agricultural producers offer decent housing for farm workers. This in turn makes it easier for farms to hire the workforce they need to succeed. HCR is proud to partner with Farm Credit East, which has awarded nearly $16 million in loans over the years without a single default.”
The program is administered as a revolving loan fund, with loan repayments made by the borrowers applied to the balance of available funds. In 2014, approximately $3.2 million is available from this program. Since its inception in 1995, Farm Credit East and its predecessor organizations have provided 265 FWH loans, totaling $15,797,797. Applicants must demonstrate the need to improve seasonal or year round farm worker housing, which they own or operate, in order for the housing to comply with the applicable state building and health codes or to construct new seasonal or year round farm worker housing. The funds cannot be used for housing for the farm owner’s family.
Agricultural producers may apply to borrow up to $100,000 per year for farm worker housing projects. An upfront, one-time fee is applied to cover administrative costs. There are no other fees or interest applied for the term of the loan. The loans are repaid in equal, annual payments of principal. The term of the loan may not exceed ten years.
To apply for a loan, contact your local Farm Credit East office (view office locations). Agricultural producers may apply at any time; however, funds will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis.
For more information:
Contact: Robert Smith