"South Sound Business Briefs for Friday, January 7, 2000"

“USDA Offers $46 Million in Rural Housing Loan GuaranteesThe U.S. Department of Agriculture, through its’ Rural Housing Service, has made over $46 million available for loan guarantees to low and moderate income families in rural Washington during fiscal year 2000. In fiscal year 1999, RHS guaranteed 356 loans totaling just over $40 million.The USDA loans are made by traditional mortgage lenders participating in the RHS program. Loans may be used to purchase new or existing single family dwellings, and may include condominiums and planned unit developments. Manufactured homes are limited to new units only.There is no maximum loan amount, but applicants must have an income that does not exceed 115 percent of the county’s median income. Applicants must also show they do not currently own a residence and must be unable to secure financing without a guarantee. RHS can guarantee loans up to 100 percent of the appraised value of the home and requires no down payment.For more information, contact the USDA Rural Development office in Puyallup at 253-845-0553 for a list of participating lenders. Lenders interested in becoming approved to participate in this RHS program may also contact the Puyallup office.Lakewold Gardens Discount Rental RateLakewold Gardens is offering a special rental rate for businesses now through March 2000.Businesses can rent the facility on Monday through Thursday, or on Fridays after 3:30 p.m., at half of the normal rental fee.The Wagner House facility at Lakewold Gardens is located on the shores of Gravelly Lake, south of Tacoma, and accommodates up to 75 seated guests or 100 in a stand up reception.Lakewold Gardens is a 10-acre former private estate. It was opened as a nonprofit public garden in 1989. For information, call 253-584-4106, or e-mail monica.lakewold@juno.com.”