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Homeownership Opportunities On The Wind River Reservation

Signa McAdams

Affordable housing is notoriously hard to find in Wyoming and especially hard to find on the Wind River Reservation. The Eastern Shoshone Housing Authority (ESHA) has a plan to use newly awarded money from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to tackle this issue and, most importantly, assist tribal members in navigating homeownership.

Through these grants, ESHA will be developing 25 new homes in the Fort Washakie area. Fifteen of these homes will be available for tribal members to own. Through a partnership with the Wind River Development Fund, tribal members interested in homeownership will be provided with multiple resources to assist them.

"We work collectively with the Wind River Development Fund regarding counseling, credit repair, working with creditors who hold debt, establish mortgage goals to help assist our families become mortgage ready for a loan, and we also provide assistance for down payment once that family is ready to get access to their loan," said Gilbert Richie with Housing Services.

The classes are geared towards enrolled Eastern Shoshone tribal members but are open to any federally-recognized tribal members in the community to earn a certification of homebuyer education. The certification is needed to get access to downpayment and closing cost assistance that can be provided.

"They're working on an online course at the development fund but they're going to be offering classes as well while recognizing the social distancing aspect. So, they're going to be a smaller class. They're going to be offered with flexible schedules in early May," said Richie.

For more information, visit the Eastern Shoshone Housing Authority's Facebook page here.

Signa McAdams is an enrolled member of the Eastern Shoshone Tribe and from the Wind River Indian Reservation.
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