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Buy a Home With a Government Grant? Avoid this Scam


If you watch enough late night television, you'll see advertisements that suggest that the Federal Government is giving all kinds of things away. You'll see ads for auctions that promise that you can buy a Ferrari for $500 or a home for $1000 through "government liquidations" or some such thing. You'll also see ads that promise to tell you how you can get money for free to purchase a home. Is this for real? Will Washington provide you with money to purchase a home?

It shouldn't surprise anyone who wasn't born yesterday that these ads that sound too good to be real are just that. Yes, the Government makes millions of dollars available for certain uses, and yes, some of those uses include housing. But little of that money is available for individuals, and none of it is available for John Q. Public to buy a home on a golf course in Shady Pines Estates. Most of the available funds are available only to businesses and other organizations, not individuals. You can obtain grant money if you own a company that would like to build a 100-unit apartment complex for low-income residents. You might even obtain some grant money if you'd like to overhaul a 100-year old home in a blighted neighborhood as a step towards urban renewal. You won't get the money to build or buy the mansion next door to Tiger Woods.

So yes, funds are available, but only under fairly limited circumstances. And the process of applying for and receiving grant money is fairly complicated. It's not just a matter of filling out a form and waiting for the money to arrive. The process involves a pile of forms, and reports, and plans and outlines for how, when and where you intend to spend the money. After you get the money, you'll probably have to report exactly how the money is being spent and whether or not everything is going according to your plan. Obtaining grant money is not a free lunch. It's hard work, and the people responsible for handing out the money want to know that the money is being spent wisely.

It may be worthwhile to check out what sort of grant money is available. If you are interested, you can find out what's available, for free at http://www.grants.gov. That's a far better alternative than spending money from some huckster on late night TV, and if you decide that you don't qualify for grant money, then you haven't wasted anything but your time.

ęCopyright 2005 by Retro Marketing.

Charles Essmeier is the owner of Retro Marketing, a firm devoted to informational Websites, including End-Your-Debt.com, a site devoted to personal bankruptcy, debt consolidation and credit counseling, and HomeEquityHelp.com, a site devoted to information regarding mortgages and home equity loans.


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