HELP Grant Assists Young Family With Down Payment Costs

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SHREVEPORT, La., March 8, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- When Aleric Hamilton and his fiancé became engaged, one thing was very clear – they needed a house.

"My fiancé already had two children and we were having a child together so after getting married we couldn't stay in the apartment," he said. "I just tried my luck to see if I was able to buy a house."

Mr. Hamilton learned of a Homebuyer Equity Leverage Partnership (HELP) grant offered through Red River Bank and the Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas (FHLB Dallas) that could help with his down payment and closing costs, and he was able to qualify for a grant and move into his home in August.

"The HELP grant helped a whole lot," said Mr. Hamilton, a 31-year-old family support coordinator for Easter Seals. "It actually took care of closing. The seller agreed to pay almost half of the closing and the HELP grant took care of the rest of it. You can't imagine how much stress that took off me. I would recommend the program to anybody."

FHLB Dallas awarded $40,000 in HELP funds through Red River Bank in 2012, to assist eight families with down payments and closing costs.

"Red River Bank has been utilizing FHLB Dallas's HELP program since 2006, and we are committed to providing resources to assist hardworking families in becoming homeowners," said Judy Madison, assistant vice president of community outreach at Red River Bank. "There is no better investment we can make in our communities than investing in the lives of our residents."

Mr. Hamilton says his four-bedroom, two-bath home is "a long way from a two bedroom apartment." He added that working with Red River Bank helped alleviate the stress and nervousness of the homebuyer process.

"Red River was fantastic. They were very nice and they went through the process step by step and answered every question I had. I was very nervous about the process, but I was surprised at how smooth the process went," he said.

HELP grants are available through FHLB Dallas member institutions, such as Red River Bank, to assist income-qualified, first-time homebuyers with down payments and closing costs on a newly constructed or existing home. For 2013, FHLB Dallas made $1 million in HELP funds available to its members on a first-come, first-served basis.

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 $35.8 billion as of December 31, 2012, is a member-owned cooperative that supports housing and community development by providing competitively priced advances and other credit products to more than 900 members and associated institutions in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico and Texas. For more information, visit the FHLB Dallas website at

The Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas logo is available at

About Red River Bank

Red River Bank is an independent community bank headquartered in Central Louisiana with banking centers also located in Northwest Louisiana. The bank was founded in 1998 by a small group of bankers, community leaders, and business people who wanted to create a better way to bank.

CONTACT: Corporate Communications Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas (214) 441-8445

Source:Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas