Denison Avenue a new neighborhood for HOPE
New London — An open house to be held noon Friday for a newly renovated single-family home at 61 Denison Ave. represents a bit of a departure for the affordable-housing group HOPE.
HOPE has been concentrating most of its rehabilitation of older housing stock near the city center, particularly around Belden Street, but found few houses to buy lately in the neighborhood, said executive director Marilyn Graham.
"Every year we try to do a couple houses," Graham said. "But we were having trouble finding anything around Belden."
So HOPE has moved to the south side of town, finding two homes in rough shape on Denison, along with another on Moore Street.
The 1,064-square-foot home at 61 Denison was purchased in 2016 from Mary Kallio for $59,900. After getting a lead grant from the city for $14,300 and paying $2,500 for asbestos abatement, HOPE has poured another $172,000 into the three-bedroom home that it plans to sell to a low-income family.
The 1903 home, with a new kitchen and baths, is on a small lot that HOPE plans to fence in, and Graham expects to sell it for $80,000. For a family of four, the maximum income to buy the house is only $24,200.
"It's less distressed than Belden Street," Graham said. "Neighborhood support has been good."
The rehabilitation, completed by Dependable Contracting, is being paid for through a Connecticut Housing & Finance Authority tax credit program. Eversource provided $500,000 for rehabs of two Denison Avenue homes as well as another at 56 Ledyard St.
Providing the light fixtures is Melissa Welch of Be The Light Designs in Waterford.
A very similar 1902 home across the street at 60 Denison Ave. near Harry's Taxi is being rehabilitated by contractor Eddie Forshak after HOPE bought it in foreclosure for $47,900 just a month after the purchase of the other property. It required a $12,250 lead grant, $4,000 to replace a boiler and $3,500 in asbestos removal costs.
HOPE is expecting to put $167,000 into the house, and will sell it for $150,000. The 1,243-square-foot house, set up illegally as a two-family home when HOPE bought it, is expected to go to a low-income family making under $45,850.
"It's a little bit bigger," Graham said. "It has a bigger yard."
Despite HOPE's recent concentration on the south side of the city, Graham said a few projects remain on Belden, and she just got funding to build new housing on a vacant lot there.
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