Family buys first home through USDA program

A Tucumcari family celebrated the purchase of their first home Tuesday, in large part due to the United States Department of Agriculture's rural home loan program.

This program creates opportunities for families like the Martinez's to become home owners and be a part of the American dream, said Tammye Trevino, USDA Housing Administrator.

Danny Trevino, a USDA housing administrator based out of Washington D.C., was in Tucumcari to congratulate Francisco and Keren Martinez. She called the program a great way for families to become part of the American dream.

"I wanted to be here in person to congratulate you on your success of becoming home owners," Trevino said.

Trevino, who was on a goodwill tour throughout the country to visit other program beneficiaries, said the USDA's program is aimed towards the rural resident. She said the USDA recognized there were several differences in those individuals needing housing assistance in urban and rural settings.

Trevino said the loans work with current interest rates and can have an interest rate as low as 1 percent, either directly through the USDA or a second-source lender. The fee structure is set up to keep the program self-funding.

After 12 years of renting a two-bedroom house for a family of five, Keren Martinez, it seemed like a good idea to at least try the program.

"We stumbled across the home loan program," Keren said. "We got a house that we once never dreamed possible."

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