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Pine Bluff leaders working to provide affordable housing to citizens

Pine Bluff leaders, like Angela White Smith of The Property Shop, are hoping make a difference and provide affordable housing options to those in the city.

PINE BLUFF, Ark. — Real estate renovation shows are something that many can only dream of on television programs, but fixing and flipping homes doesn't have to be a television fairy tale.

In Pine Bluff, they hope that it's the ticket to more affordable housing in the city.

For Angela White Smith, a realtor with The Property Shop, she's hoping to make a change in the city.

"Pine Bluff is just such a ripe market for flipping homes," White Smith said.

With that mentality at the forefront, leaders in Pine Bluff are hoping to change the area's image one house at a time.

"I've been helping people from other states find homes here because they see the hidden value," White Smith said.

At the moment, she's working to flip one home that sits at the corner of 30th Ave. and Cherry Street.

"I've always loved this place. This home, I purchased for $55,000. My budget is 40. So I'll be in $95,000," White Smith said.

And while she's working the home, she's not looking for a high return on investment, either.

"You hear like the LA market and all these markets. 'Oh, I made $100,000 profit or $50,000 profit.' If I can turn $15,000 to $20,000 in a month, I'm good," White Smith said.

This is all a part of GoForward Pine Bluff's A.L.I.C.E. program, providing Pine Bluff residents with options of buying quality homes.

"There are individuals that work every day, that pay taxes, that are doing jobs for service, but they're barely making ends meet," said Ryan Watley, CEO of GoForward Pine Bluff.

With that in mind, that's where city leaders said the A.L.I.C.E. program comes into play.

Watley said right now, nearly 50% of those who qualify for A.L.I.C.E. are pouring most of their income into just their homes alone.

"A homeownership situation would definitely help them," Watley said.

Now, the goal is to get buyers inside of these affordable homes on the market in the city.

The program gives people financing options based on their income.

Watley said with the $300,000 they've raised so far, the city is looking to sell between 10 to 12 homes each year.

This is something that White Smith will continue to work toward.

"[It] means families, single people, retirees can move into them and continue to add life interest and add to the tapestry of Pine Bluff," White Smith said.

White Smith also told THV11 she plans to have the current home she's working on flipped and on the market in six weeks. 

By the end of the year, she expects to have three more under her belt. 

To learn about how you can qualify, you can visit here.


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