The state legislature created the Florida Housing Finance Corporation about 40 years ago in order to provide a range of affordable housing opportunities for residents in Florida. One of its programs, the State Housing Initiatives Partnership program (SHIP), is designed to help very-low, low, and moderate income households. SHIP dollars may be used to fund emergency repairs, new construction, and a plethora of other home ownership issues, including those which affect home insurance requirements.
Citrus County was recently awarded $1.8 million from SHIP, the largest allocation ever given to the county by this program, according to Michelle Alford, the county’s Housing Services Director. Alford manages a department of 10 people and the projects and emergencies her group addresses daily are like a multi-armed octopus at work in the ocean. She said that her team’s mission is to ensure there is a sufficient quantity and quality of decent, safe and affordable homes for low and very-low income families.