Small Cities Development Program (SCDP)

The Swift County HRA is currently working on Small Cities Development Program funds for the multiple cities throughout the county. These cities, and number of homeowners being awarded funds are as follows: Appleton (18), Benson (20), DeGraff & Kerkhoven (15 awards combined with the cities of DeGraff & Kerkhoven).


Swift County HRA staff will take applications for the program, inspect the home and coordinate the rehabilitation. Households that previously returned the intent to participate form and are already on the interested list will be served first. A secondary list will be established for newly interested parties. Complete applications will be processed by date and time received basis. Only houses within the priority target area will be eligible and will be eligible in the first year.


In cooperation with the Upper Minnesota Valley Regional Development Commission and Swift County Housing and Redevelopment Authority (HRA), the cities of Appleton, Benson, DeGraff & Murdock have received home repair funds through the Small Cities Development Program (SCDP). These funds will provide multiple income-eligible homeowners, within targeted-areas of the city they reside in, with 0% interest, deferred loans to make needed repairs to their homes. (A deferred loan is a loan, operates like a grant, with no monthly payment and will be forgiven 1/7 per year- over seven 7 years, and will revert to a grant if the property remains the owners principal place of residence for the 7 years and does not change ownership within the 7 years.) The average improvement project cost is $25,000. The maximum SCDP deferred loan amount will be $25,000.   


Scenario One: The maximum project is $25,000. Based on income, applicant would be eligible for 100% of the deferred loan. The loan would carry no interest and would be forgiven 1/7th per year the owner is following the grant guidelines. If the total project cost exceeds $25,000, the homeowner may need to secure financing for the balance of the work over $25,000.


Scenario Two: Based on income, applicant would be eligible for 75% of the cost to repair the home of the maximum grant of $25,000. This will be in the form of a 0% interest deferred/forgivable loan up to the maximum grant amount for 7-years with 1/7 forgiven each year and not have to be paid back after 7 years. The additional 25%, or more, of the projected total project cost would be the homeowner’s responsibility (Swift County HRA can assist homeowners with finding funding for their match).


Applicants must meet the following eligibility requirements:

Target Area: Your home must be located within the city limits of Appleton. Priority will go to those within Target Area A (See attached Map) 

Occupancy: The house to be improved must be your principal place of residency (owner occupied).

Real Estate Taxes/Homeowners Insurance: You must be current with your real estate taxes and have current homeowner’s insurance.

* Ownership: You must have a qualifying property ownership of one of the following:

    • Proof of ownership must be recorded with the Swift County Land Records Office.
    • Contract for Deed: Sellers must be income eligible.
    • Life Estate: Remainderman must be income eligible

* Income: Your gross annual income must be within the set limits as follows:  


Persons in Household



















    1. Health and safety
    2. Deteriorated lead-based paint
    3. GFCI electrical outlets
    4. Smoke detectors
    5. Handrails
    6. Faulty steps


    1. Building Integrity: structural concerns, foundations, rafters & roofing, siding, etc.
    2. Energy Efficiency Improvements: insulation, new windows, new doors, furnace, etc. 
    3. All Other Repairs That Are Permanent and Necessary.


The program will follow the guidelines laid out below:

* Application: You will need to complete an application for the program which requires verification of income, property ownership, property insurance and current taxes.

* Property Inspection: The property will be inspected by a Swift County HRA Housing Inspector who will work with you to determine what repairs must be done. Lead rules and regulations do apply.

* Work Write-Ups: The HRA staff will develop specifications on what work is to be done and how the work should be done. They will prepare work write-ups for you to contact contractors of your choice to bid. Assistance is available to help you through the process if you choose.

* Bid Awards: You accept or reject bids.

* Repayment Agreement: You enter into an agreement with the City to accept the conditions of the loan.

* Proceed to Work: HRA staff will send a letter telling your Contractor(s) that the work may begin.

* Payments: Payments can be made on a partial basis and/or when all work has been completed.  In order to receive a payment, the Contractor must submit a lien waiver, a billing statement, a sworn construction statement and a signed completion certificate (all furnished). In order to make payment, the property must be inspected by Swift County HRA. You must give signed permission to pay the Contractor.

* Project Completion: Upon your signing, the Repayment Agreement will be recorded at Swift County Land Records Office.


Please note: you must live in the target area on the map on the side of this page.

Call the Swift County HRA at 320-843-4676 today!  Funds are limited!