LEVANT – In honor of Homeownership Month, a young man with high student loans is looking forward to his future after purchasing his first home.
Meet Andrew VanEss, a Husson University graduate with high student loans. He’s now celebrating his recent purchase of a three bedroom house in Levant.
“At first I was very timid and didn’t know where to start,” said VanEss, “So don’t be afraid to ask the stupid questions that you think (of).”
Together with the USDA Rural Development and Residential Mortgage Services, he decided at the age of 29, it was best to build his own equity and financial stability. Within the last 10 years, the USDA Rural Development helped more than 17,000 families make their dreams of owning a home possible with their services.
“This program in fact, enables you to become a homeowner, the benefit of it in many cases is, what you’re going to be paying for as a homeowner,” said Tommy Higgins, acting state director of the USDA Rural Development, “In some cases, it’s the same or even less than if you were renting a place.”
His home was built from the ground up and he was also able to choose how the inside looked from the beginning.
“Looking back it was very intimidating,” said VanEss, “Being younger with a high student loan debt, It was intimidating to commit to a 30 year mortgage. But I don’t regret it at all.”
“By having a young homeowner like this purchase a home in the state of Maine, it puts equity back into the rural community and into the homeowners pocket,” said Higgins, “It helps Maine thrive by keeping young people into the state and showing them that they have a place here.”
He’s hoping his story will inspire others that homeownership is possible and there are options available to assistance them.
“I would continue to encourage young professionals to ask questions and create their own financial stability,” said VanEss.