No one looked happier than Nick McGuire as he strode cheerfully through Tempe Micro Estates with Larry, his fluffy black dog, at his side.
McGuire, 43, has been the proud owner of his own, two-story, 600-square-foot, one-bedroom home in Tempe’s urban corridor since December 2021. It’s a home, he says, that he could never have afforded if not for assistance from Maricopa County’s Human Services Department with U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) funds.
“I am thrilled — to say the least,” said McGuire, who works at Trader Joe’s. “I am beyond excited to have a home as amazing as this, and I can walk to parks, restaurants and stores.”
And Larry, he said, likes the nearby dog parks. It’s a home that is not only brand-new to him, but also brand new.
The project, in the finishing stages and designed by coLAB studio in Tempe, showcases 13 environmentally sustainable compact homes with full-size appliances and striking, cutting-edge designs. The homes are arranged around a community garden with private patios.
The Tempe Micro Estates development is part of Newtown’s Community Land Trust program that was developed through a partnership between Maricopa County, the city of Tempe and Newtown as a way to provide affordable housing options in the Phoenix-metro area that offer environmentally sustainable features.
Maricopa County provided $530,000 in funding towards the Micro Estates project for construction costs through a grant from HUD’s HOME Investment Partnerships Grant funds. In addition to the County HOME funds, the city of Tempe donated the land that was purchased through HUD’s Community Development Block Grant program for $600,000, plus an additional $290,000 in construction costs.
All 13 residences are either sold or under contract to people who earn 80 percent of Area Median Income (AMI) or a maximum of $44,250 for a single person. Qualifying buyers received a discount of between $48,000 and $88,000.
Their average mortgage is $800 per month plus $130 for the homeowner’s association and related costs, according to project manager David Crummy, of the non-profit Tempe-based Newtown Community Development Corporation.
Each buyer owns their home, but as part of their purchase agreement, if they decide to sell in the future, Newtown has a right of first refusal to ensure that the homes remain affordable. Newtown can elect to purchase the home and resell it to another buyer who would qualify under the program ensuring that the affordable housing option remains available in the community for the foreseeable future.
Maricopa County funded $530,000 towards the Micro estates project for construction costs through a grant from HUD’s HOME Investment Partnerships Grant funds.
In addition to the County HOME funds, the city of Tempe donated the land that was purchased through HUD’s Community Development Block Grant program for $600,000, plus an additional $290,000 in construction costs.
This is one of many initiatives that Maricopa County’s Human Services Department administers to provide affordable housing opportunities to county residents. Project and programs funded by HUD grants strengthen public-private partnerships with the goal of expanding the supply of safe and affordable housing for individuals and families facing economic adversity.
This is all good news to McGuire. Because of Maricopa County’s partnership with Tempe and Newtown, he — and Larry — are living their American dream.
For more information on resources available to Maricopa County residents through through the Human Services Department, visit HSD.Maricopa.gov.
About Maricopa County Human Services
As the fourth largest county in the nation home to some of the nation’s fastest-growing cities, Maricopa County’s population is large, growing and more diverse than ever. Maricopa County’s Human Services Department has five divisions that provide services and programs to people of all ages and abilities to promote their well-being. From offering early education to career training and employment services to case management for aging and disabled adults — the Human Services Department serves as a leader in the region to support strong families, neighborhoods, and community relationships. Learn more about the financial, educational, and support resources available to eligible Maricopa County residents at HSD.maricopa.gov.