Pilot Program Helps 25 Families Stake Roots

A pilot program which seeks to attract new residents to move to North Central Kansas is deemed a success.

Financial incentives offered through the pilot North Central Kansas Regional Relocation Program attracted 38 new residents and assisted in the purchase of 25 homes in the region in the past year.

According to the North Central Regional Planning Commission, the pilot program officially launched August 15, 2022 and concluded in Spring 2023. It was available in Cloud, Ellsworth, Jewell, Lincoln, Mitchell, Ottawa, Republic and Saline counties. The program helped make home ownership more affordable for those relocating to the region by reducing the barriers of down payments and closing costs.

The organization, based in Beloit, administered the program offered by its housing non-profit, NCK Housing Opportunities, Inc. The non-profit serves Cloud, Ellsworth, Jewell, Lincoln, Mitchell, Ottawa, Republic, and Saline counties. An award from the Dane G. Hansen Foundation of Logan, Kansas, assisted in the creation of the loan and grant pool.

“This initiative would not have been possible without the generous assistance from the Dane G. Hansen Foundation and the tremendous support we received from area banks and economic development groups,” Program Manager Keegan Bailey said.

The program offered a combination of a 0% down payment assistance loan of $10,000 and closing cost grant of $2,500 when purchasing a home of $50,000 of greater. In total, it impacted 64 residents living in 25 households. Of the residents who accessed the program, 15 moved from out of state, 26 moved from within North Central Kansas, and 23 moved from elsewhere in Kansas. The total value of the 25 homes purchased was $3.4 million, with $312,500 coming from the pilot program. To be eligible, home buyers had to relocate to an eligible county in North Central Kansas within 18 months of the request. The primary bank loan also had to be provided by a bank having a physical location in the North Central Regional Planning Commission 12-county service area.

“The program offered new residents up to 18 months to experience all the region had to offer before staking roots here.” Bailey said. “We were really encouraged by the program’s results and positive local impacts in the region.”

For more about the program, visit www.ncrpc.org/nckregionalrelocationincentive. For more information about NCRPC, visit www.ncrpc.org.

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Photo by Tobias Schäfer on Unsplash