In December of 2009 an apartment building owned by Rodney and Betty Hestekin sustained major damage in a fire. The building had been financed through USDA Rural Development’s Multi-Family Housing program. All 18 tenants living in the building were displaced.
Rodney and Betty immediately sprang into action. They worked with tenants to ensure that each found a temporary place to live. They also worked to make sure the building was repaired as quickly as possible so tenants could move back in and return to life as it was before the fire.
The Hestekin’s response was no surprise to Rural Development staff that works with the couple in the East Central region of Minnesota. Both Rodney and Betty are known as owners that put the needs of their tenants first and go the extra mile to ensure that their properties remain quality places to live.
“When we’re walking though a unit, we ask ourselves, ‘would we want to live here?’” Rodney said. “To me, that’s the least we can do for someone thinking about living in one of our buildings.”
Rural Development is partnering with the Minnesota Housing Finance Agency and the Greater Minnesota Housing Fund to host a series of affordable housing dialogues throughout Minnesota. The three organizations are also announcing regional partners in affordable housing awards at each dialogue. The Hestekins were recognized on April 29 at the dialogue in St. Cloud.
Rodney and Betty have been borrowers and managers in Rural Development’s Multi-Family Housing program since 1985. They own properties in Stacey, New Haven and Wyoming, Minn.
During their time in the program, Rodney and Betty have been dedicated to providing good housing to low-income seniors. Their properties are safe, clean, well-maintained and models for other multi-family units throughout Minnesota.
Minnesota’s Rural Development office oversees the management of about 600 multi-family housing properties containing over 11,000 units throughout the state.
To find out more about affordable rural housing opportunities for your community, click here.