DECATUR, Ill. (WCIA) — The City of Decatur is trying to revitalize homes using American Rescue Plan funding.

This week they are launching its owner-occupied Small Home Improvement Program, also known as SHIP. The program gives funds to homeowners for home repairs.

City officials said, “The owner-occupied Small Housing Improve is an attempt to invest in the urban core where City staff is starting to see the first signs of housing decline. This is a preventive measure. If we do not assist in these areas now, our housing challenges could continue to spread, and more neighborhoods could begin to decline.”

The new program goes along with the City’s Owner-Occupied Home Rehabilitation Program. “It’s clear there is a need for home improvement assistance as the City received over 700 applications for that rehab program.” Those not chosen for that program may apply to the SHIP program, said City Officials.

The City presents the Northeast Community Fund with $450,000 for small repair grants, adding up to $15,000 per housing unit. 

There are a few requirements:

  • The home must be within the designated low-moderate income neighborhood
  • Single-family, owner-occupied property, and it cannot be for sale
  • The title to the house must be in the name of the person applying
  • The applicant must have owned their home for at least a year
  • The title has to be free of delinquent liens, taxes, and encumbrances
  • No outstanding fees, water bills, or charges owed to the City of Decatur