The Montana Board of Housing recently issued a $42 Million bond sale which will be used to help first-time Montana home buyers secure a lower interest rate for their home mortgages. Montana Board of Housing Executive Director Bruce Brensdal says the number of people using the program is on the rise after a significant drop during the recession.

"During the housing boom in the mid 2000s, we were probably purchasing mortgages in the range of $200 million a year, but things really slowed down during the recession and housing shortage, when we slipped down to doing probably less than $50 million, now we're probably looking to do more like $75 to $100 million," Brensdal said.

Brensdal says the money from this bond will go to help around 200 families, but believes the impact will be much broader than that.

"If they can get in at a 3.5 percent rate, which is our rate now, verses 4 percent  to 4.25 percent that's a savings to our families and that savings amounts to helping our families do other things, you know, pay other bills and spend money in our communities."

To qualify for the lower than conventional rate loans, home buyers must earn around $50,000. The average purchase price of homes that qualify is $161,000.

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