Lots Still Available in Gurney's Bend

Alliance accepting applications for Homeownership Program

* Photo and video courtesy of Jones Aerial Solutions

HAZARD, Ky. (Feb. 8, 2022) – Gurney’s Bend, a new subdivision in the Allais section of Hazard, will be completed this year. With two empty lots still available, the Housing Development Alliance (HDA) is inviting potential low-income homebuyers to apply for its Homeownership Program.

Applying is the first step on the journey towards owning a new home, and with HDA ready to build two more homes in Gurney’s Bend, HDA officials said this is an opportune time for folks interested in living in the Allais section of Hazard to apply.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for local families looking to become homeowners,” said Scott McReynolds, executive director at HDA. “Our funders and donors have made these homes affordable for low-income families, and with the homes being so close to downtown Hazard, it’s an excellent investment for a family to make.”

The two properties in Gurney’s Bend offer a prime location in a well-built, safe neighborhood that is close to businesses, schools, shopping centers, and more. Qualifying homebuyers will work closely with HDA by selecting a floor plan, paint colors, flooring, light fixtures, and more for their new home.

HDA officials said homes in Gurney’s Bend are ideal for small families. The 3-bedroom, 1 or 2-bath homes are constructed by HDA’s crew of professional carpenters, and every home is built of the highest quality materials and is energy efficient, which can save families over $900 a year on utility costs.

Since beginning home construction in May of 2021, HDA has completed nine of the homes and eight of the homeowners have already moved in.

“It’s becoming a fine little community,” McReynolds said. “You can tell just how happy folks are to be there. We still have a long way to go, but it’s amazing to see the transformation. Allais has gone from looking rundown and forgotten to being the site of the largest housing development within the city limits in nearly 50 years.”

Gurney’s Bend is the product of a partnership between the City of Hazard and HDA. The two teamed up in 2018 on the Allais Redevelopment Project, with the project since gaining major funding from various sources, including the James Graham Brown Foundation and the Appalachian Impact Fund (AIF).

“We know affordable housing is not only a need in our region, but homeownership is one of the quickest ways to move people out of poverty,” said Lora Smith, AIF co-founder and executive director.

At present, 40 percent of families in the four counties served by HDA – Breathitt, Knott, Leslie, and Perry – live in inadequate housing. This means that thousands of people, including nearly 7,000 children, live in substandard homes (homes that need extensive repairs or are not decent places to live), overcrowded homes, and cost-burdened homes, which means the family can’t afford to live there.

For HDA, building 15 homes that are affordable for local families in a section of Hazard that has long needed new life is a win-win-win.

“Homeowners get a safe, decent, affordable house,” HDA’s McReynolds said. “It’s also good for the City of Hazard, because we worked together to tear down an eyesore and turned it into a community with 15 taxpayers, 15 customers, 15 families that may have children in the local school system. Housing is economic development.”

Low-income individuals and families interested in having a home built in Gurney’s Bend should call 606-436-0497 or email rebekah@hdahome.org.

For those not sure if they qualify as low-income, staff at HDA will collect information from the interested homebuyer to help determine their income status.

For more information about HDA’s income-based Homeownership Program, click here.

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