In certain neighborhoods, the development of quality housing for Garland’s rich array in incomes and household types is a high priority. The City offers an array of programs through the GREAT Homes Initiative to encourage the construction of new homes, renovation of existing homes and public infrastructure in these neighborhoods. Garland’s Department of Housing and Community Services (HCS) does so by using increasingly scarce federal funds to provide affordable housing opportunities and to strengthen and revitalize Garland neighborhoods.
Building on the successful development of more than 25 houses since 2011, the City will continue its efforts of reinvesting into neighborhoods in partnership with the private and nonprofit sector. The hallmark of the GREAT Homes initiative is not only making affordable the upfront construction or renovation costs but also making the cost of living in that home affordable over time. Providing energy efficient appliances, window and other building techniques lowers the monthly cost of owning a home while increasing is value. This long standing program has helped more than 40 families during the past six years make much needed and lasting upgrades to their properties.
The HCS Department’s GREAT Homes program is an innovative approach to re-energizing Garland’s existing housing stock through energy efficient and aesthetic upgrades while maintaining the architectural integrity of Garland’s more mature neighborhoods. The program offers creative financing terms which not only benefit the buyers of the homes but provides a dollar per dollar return on investment back to the City, perpetuating the program. The Department of Housing and Urban Development has deemed Garland’s housing initiatives as a “best practices model” for other cities in Texas to duplicate. The results of which have led to consultations from cities in East Texas to the southern coast of Texas.