We can help with remodeling, home repairs, loans, budgeting

Did you find something in our column last week that we could help you with?

We at NeighborWorks of Grays Harbor do so many different things that we try annually to let everyone know just what we might be able to help them with.

Last week we talked about our ability to help with mortgage default prevention, down payment assistance, home buyer education, home buying counseling, providing rental units and landlord/tenant expertise. And we’re not done!

As you’ll read today, this longtime Grays Harbor nonprofit organization can also help with budgeting and money management, various loan programs, and our specialty — home improvement construction help.


The Mission of NeighborWorks® of Grays Harbor County is to develop partnerships in the community between business, government, and residents to create safe and affordable housing opportunities for all residents of Grays Harbor County.

You can see how we’re working to accomplish this through a variety of avenues. Read on to find out more about the specifics.


Because nearly everyone can use a little help in sorting out monthly bills or determining how best to reach financial goals (such as savings, buying a home, paying for an education, taking a vacation, etc.) we offer budget/money management counseling.

Anyone feeling the need to get a handle on their spending or wanting to learn the skills necessary for financial stability can access this service, at no charge.

The NeighborWorks counseling department is also available to make presentations to any community group that would like more information on any of our services.


We have various loan programs that can help first-time homebuyers with down-payment assistance information and second position loans including closing costs when made with one of our participating lender partners. We can also provide funding to cover repair costs if the house to be purchased is in need of rehab.

For those Grays Harbor residents outside of Aberdeen or Hoquiam who already own or are buying a home, we have a great partner in the (USDA) United States Department of Agriculture’s “Rural Development 502” program and can make tandem loans with their product.

Besides purchase monies for existing homes, there may be funding available to make eligible repairs as well. This is called a purchase-rehab loan.


Our construction department is well versed in finding and assessing the problem areas of most houses, as well as determining proper, efficient solutions for most problems found.

For our homeowner clients, we typically provide a thorough inspection, help prioritize the issues, write scopes of work, and may even estimate the construction costs.

Then we determine where any of our other local partners, such as the PUD Conservation program and others can help add value to the project.

After that, our assistance can include creating construction drawings, holding bid meetings with contractors, creating solid contracts, managing the onsite work, validating any change orders, creating pay-outs and gathering all the inspection documents and lien waivers before payments are made.

We are also known to give out plenty of advice over the phone, for example “how long should you keep the records about a rehab?” Answer: One year after the rehab is completed to your satisfaction unless there are longer warranty periods. Bidding documents can be tossed immediately.

For our first-time homebuyer loan clients, we discuss any inspection issues found in a prospective home, prioritize the results and then give some general cost guidance of the repairs needed.

This information, along with our internet based homebuyer education class at HomeSage.org, results in a home buyer who is equipped to make an informed decision about the biggest purchase of their life!


While many of the programs and lending resources are focused on low and moderate income homeowners and buyers, anyone can access our most of our services regardless of income.

Housing counseling is always free of charge — however, the HomeSage.org course online does have a fee for the course and includes a counseling session.

We do construction management fee-for-service for anyone. We have done construction oversight on city projects, professional offices and for many regular folks wanting our oversight on their remodel project.

The other part of our job is bringing resource opportunities into the community from a variety of sources. We have rehab and down payment assistance funds to loan that are tailored to be affordable to you.

Dave Murnen and Pat Beaty are construction specialists at NeighborWorks® of Grays Harbor County, where Murnen is the executive director. This is a non-profit organization committed to creating safe and affordable housing for all residents of Grays Harbor County.

Do you have questions about home repair, renting, remodeling or becoming a homeowner? Call us at 533-7828, write us or visit us at 710 E. Market St. in Aberdeen.


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