Renter 2 Owner

A new pilot project to transform aging multifamily housing in downtown Lewiston into safe, reliable, beautiful starter homes and help Tree Street residents realize their dreams of home ownership.

We have room in our next first-time homeowner class!

Are you a Tree Streets resident who wants to learn about buying and owning a home?

Buying your first home is the foothold families need to begin building financial stability. But across the country, first-time home buyers are struggling to find desirable housing they can afford to own.

Families in downtown Lewiston are looking for the opportunity to buy their first home, but if they want to stay in the neighborhood they love, their options are limited to multi-family buildings in varying degrees of distress. Buying one of these buildings means assuming the risk and responsibility of being a landlord, which is simply too high-risk a place for most people to begin their home ownership journey.

The Renter 2 Owner Program:

  • Educates Lewiston residents who want to become homeowners with a realistic, localized, hands-on approach, and connects them with professional resources so they can pursue the housing type that meets their needs.
  • Creates desirable, low-risk starter homes in Lewiston by renovating and converting existing downtown rental stock into affordable condominiums, with the goal of creating more options for people seeking to buy their first home.
  • Gives graduates of our educational program the right of first refusal to purchase these condominiums if they so choose, and provides 18 months of ongoing support and mentorship to help new owners succeed.

“I know that investing in home ownership is a path to become independent and build wealth.

I have considered buying a building, living in it and renting it out, but the people I know who have done that are really struggling and wish they had never done it.

I know I want to buy a home but I don’t understand the risks and the challenges or where to start. You are the first people I am asking for help, because I trust you and I know you want to help people.”

This 4-unit in Lewiston’s downtown, pilot site of Renter 2 Owner, will become 4 durable, attractive, easy to maintain “starter homes” this year.

During renovation, we’ll educate our first cohort of first-time home buyers, who will learn about:

  • Different types of housing and ownership models;
  • Financing, budgeting, and mortgages;
  • Home repair and maintenance; and
  • Property management as an individual and as part of a condominium association.

After finishing this class, graduates will independently explore the housing market with the support of financial and real estate professionals we’ve connected them with.

If they decide they are interested in condominium ownership, graduates will have the opportunity to purchase Renter 2 Owner condominiums at an affordable rate. After purchase, new owners will begin an 18-month mentorship to become successful home owners and a sustainable, effective HOA.