May 31, 2022 - News

West Des Moines to launch $4 million home improvement program

An illustration of a house.
Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

West Des Moines is launching a home improvement program to beautify properties in the city's oldest neighborhood, Valley Junction, a city official tells Axios.

Why it matters: Valley Junction is the most affordable area of the city, making it an important piece to West Des Moines' housing puzzle, says Clyde Evans, the city's community development director.

  • The new program is intended to give an extra boost of $4 million to an area of the city where improvements are most needed, he says.

Details: The Historic West Des Moines Housing Fund is a three-year pilot that will match a homeowner's contributions to property improvements by up to $25,000.

  • The program will also offer down payment assistance for new buyers.

Plus: The city is planning to make offers to purchase single-family rental properties in "poor or below normal condition" in the neighborhood, with the goal of renovating and selling them to families.

What's ahead: Polk County supervisors last week allocated $1 million for the program. The rest will be paid from city allocations and donations, Evans said.

  • The city will start accepting applications July 1.
A map of Valley Junction.
The Historic West Des Moines Housing Fund will provide assistance to homeowners in these areas. Map courtesy of West Des Moines
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