TUPELO, Miss., April 21, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Two years ago, Malinda Wells and her husband purchased a home in Tupelo, Mississippi, to live in during their retirement years, but the joy of homeownership vanished when the house became a nightmare.
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Mrs. Wells, 66 and her husband Teddy, 77, are disabled and living on a fixed income. Soon after purchasing the 43-year-old newly renovated home, Mrs. Wells went to the hospital due to her low blood sugar. When she came home from the hospital, the roof had begun to leak when it rained and water would run down the walls.
"I called the realtor and she had the seller come out to repair the roof. He glued some roof tiles down but it didn't do any good, and then he never came back again. I got scared listening to the sound of the rain coming in, so I couldn't sleep in my bedroom," Mrs. Wells said.
In addition, the couple's living and dining room areas were always cold. They later learned that the new windows that were installed shortly before they moved in were of poor quality.
"We didn't have the money to fix these problems as we had just bought the house. I heard about the SNAP grant program at church one Sunday and thought I needed to look into it," Mrs. Wells said.
Special Needs Assistance Program (SNAP) grants are available through Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas (FHLB Dallas) member institutions on a first-come, first-served basis to assist income-qualified, special-needs homeowners with home repairs and modifications.
The city of Tupelo and Trustmark National Bank (Trustmark), an FHLB Dallas member institution, have established a partnership in order to utilize the SNAP grants to help homeowners. The city selects the homeowners who are in the most need, and Trustmark distributes the grants.
Mrs. Wells called the city to see if they would qualify for the program. She spoke to Lynda Ford, community development specialist for the city of Tupelo.
"Malinda and Teddy are wonderful people and great candidates for the SNAP grant program," said Lynda Ford. "They purchased a house that had been renovated, but unfortunately the quality of the work was poor. The roof was done incorrectly and the windows were not installed properly, so they didn't work as they should, and were letting in the rain and air."
Community banks like Trustmark are able to invest in their own communities by utilizing the SNAP grant program to help homeowners in the area they serve.
"Trustmark believes in serving the citizens in our community by supporting those people in need," said Steffani Jenkins, director of community development at Trustmark. "Our partnership with the city of Tupelo and FHLB Dallas has enabled us to assist residents like Mr. and Mrs. Wells, by helping maintain their homes in a safe and livable condition."
The couple qualified for a $5,000 SNAP grant and was able to replace their roof and six of their windows. Mrs. Wells recently had knee surgery and is happy to be recovering in a warm, dry home thanks to repairs made with the SNAP grant.
"The city came to the rescue and thank God!" said Mrs. Wells. "It has changed our lives."
Since the program's inception in 2009, more than $7.3 million in SNAP grants have been awarded to assist 1,464 families throughout FHLB Dallas' five-state District of Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, and Texas. To learn more about SNAP and other FHLB Dallas programs, visit fhlb.com.
About the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas
The Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas is one of 12 district banks in the FHLBank System created by Congress in 1932. FHLB Dallas, with total assets of $30.2 billion as of December 31, 2013, is a member-owned cooperative that supports housing and community development by providing competitively priced loans and other credit products to approximately 900 members and associated institutions in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, and Texas. For more information, visit the FHLB Dallas website at fhlb.com.
The photo is also available via AP PhotoExpress.
CONTACT: Corporate Communications Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas www.fhlb.com (214) 441-8445
Source:Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas