Few Socorro County residents have applied for the USDA rural housing repair grants or loans, so the Socorro Public Library is stepping in to help people navigate the application process.

The USDA program is geared toward residents who may need to add safety equipment or eliminate hazards in their homes. Both grants and low-interest loans are available.

The program is designed to help people with repairs they cannot afford or to make needed improvements to their homes. For example, if there’s someone who needs to put in a walk-in shower for easier bathing, that’s potentially an eligible project.

There have not been many Socorro applicants for the program, so the Socorro Public Library is helping people navigate the application process. The library is partnering to help so that applicants aren’t scared of the process, said Socorro librarian Chelsea Jones.

Residents can call the library or walk in for help. Jones would contact a contractor to provide an estimate of the proposed improvement or repair.

There is a waitlist for the loans, but if the need is dire that application would be prioritized, said Jones.

To apply:

-The person has to be the homeowner and occupy the home.

-The family income must be within the very-low-income limit.

-For the grants, the applicant has to be 62 or older and not able to repay a repair loan.

-The loans can be used to repair, improve, or modernize homes or to remove health and safety hazards.

For more information, contact librarian Chelsea Jones at the library or by phone at 575-835-1114.