“I wanted to provide a safe home for my son..”
Updated: Oct 12, 2022
“I wanted to provide a safe home for my son..” Joshua Poitras, Home Improvement and Lead Removal Loan Client
Joshua Poitras, a single father and U.S. veteran, purchased a four-family house in January 2020. “I wanted to provide a safe home for my son, so I inquired about getting some financial help to have the house deleaded.” The house was built in 1860, and the exterior was last painted in 1978. “Loose paint was falling off,” Joshua said. He also wanted to bring his house into compliance, ensuring that the apartments would be lead safe for his current and future tenants.
Joshua contacted the City of Lowell’s Division of Planning and Development to receive information about MassHousing’s “Get the Lead Out Program”. He was referred to Ed Alcantara at the Merrimack Valley Housing Partnership for assistance with his application. “Ed was extremely knowledgeable in explaining the program and putting the paperwork together. I couldn’t have done this without his help,” said Joshua.
Soon after his lead removal application was started, COVID-19 pandemic restrictions and closures began. However, the project kept moving forward despite the new challenges presented by the pandemic. Once the City of Lowell's Department of Planning and Development completed the scope of work, the project was put out to bid.
Joshua was then referred to Steve Maguire, MCCI Loan Officer. Joshua was approved for two loans: a lead removal loan and a home improvement loan. The lead removal loan required a 0% down payment, and no monthly payments. The loan is paid back upon the sale or refinance of the house. The structural repairs were done with a second low-interest home improvement loan. "Steve Maguire of MCCI did a great job on the lending side," said Joshua.
David Foss and Sons, LLC, was the deleading contractor. They sided the house with vinyl, wrapped the windows with aluminum, and de-leaded the interiors. "David was detailed, thorough, and kept the historical character of the woodwork." said Joshua.
In addition to having a beautiful lead-safe home, Joshua gets a tax credit of $1,500 per unit. "I have a lead-safe home and don't have to worry about anyone being poisoned," Joshua said.