The dying of the Teacher Next Door program in Baltimore?:Hot and Latest News
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The dying of the Teacher Next Door program in Baltimore?

For years, I have thought about buying a HUD home through the Teacher-Next-Door Program. I've had the site with the homes on it bookmarked for years, and, over the last several months, I have been checking it out more and more. See, a lot of my friends bought homes in the program, in areas as eclectic as Federal Hill, Bel-Air/Edison, and Lauraville. The thing is, the pickings these days are worse than sparse. I mean, check it out. There are two houses there, located in the worst parts of the city; one house is $26K, and one house is $19K. Regular price. Getting them for half would be barely anything. But what teacher is going to fix up a house in a horrible part of the city, and a house that is in such poor shape that it's the price of a car?

We can look at the full HUD website for MD, too, and I found a house I liked, at 5100 Walther Ave.. (The house was listed on the HUD website as being on Walther Boulevard, which is a different street altogether, all the way up by White Marsh, and doesn't appear on Google Maps. A friend left a comment for me the other day about the house, though, and I figured out that it was actually Walther Avenue, so I decided to look closer then.) The house was originally listed on the HUD website for $109K, and was recently decreased to $99K. So obviously they are having a hard time selling it.

After reading the HUD report (it needs quite a bit of work, as all HUD homes do, but it looked do-able and liveable immediately), I checked it out today; I walked around the yard, looked in the windows. I got excited. If I could get this house for 50% off through the Teacher-Next-Door program, and spend a few years putting my sweat into fixing the house up, I might be able to make a nice profit off of it in a few years time. The kind of profit that might help me pay off student loans and put me in very nice financial shape. Bonus points that the house looked nice, had a nice yard, and is a decent part of the city (though the road, which I used to live on as well, is a little too busy for my liking... I would have dealt with it). I got excited about how I would do this, and emailed a friend who knows the TND program well.

Unfortunately, he informed me that because the house is currently set up as a double unit (that's what the HUD website says; other websites for it call it a single unit), that it is not eligible for the Teacher-Next-Door program. Well, isn't that nice? I would have totally bought it, and fixed it up real nice, and been the "good neighbor" that the program touts that it wants.

My realtor tells me that the program has been pretty bad for a year or two, and he thinks that, overall, the program might be struggling financially. He says a lot fewer are taking advantage of it than before. I guess the HUD Teacher-Next-Door program is kind of dying, at least here in Baltimore - and that's pretty strange, considering the increase of foreclosed homes and the flooded market. Anybody have any answers?

So it's back to the basics. I'll probably be getting a house that is already pretty well rehabbed, because, well, it just doesn't make as much financial sense unless I can get a house for a really good deal, which I doubt will happen. There are a lot of possibilities (I really like a St. Ambrose house I looked at), and, since I'm not picky, the choosing of the house will not be a problem. It's just the mortgage I'm still uncertain about, but I have appointments with housing counselors and that should clear some of that up.

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