UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS, Ohio – Michael and Elizabeth MacMillan flashed beaming smiles as they stood in front of the new home they purchased with the help of Cuyahoga Land BANK, , which gave them a big discount because Michael was a U.S. military veteran recently discharged from the Air Force.
Cuyahoga Land Bank used the home as the backdrop as officials announced the Homefront Veterans Home Ownership Program. It is sponsored by the county and the Cuyahoga Land Bank. For eligible veterans of the U.S. military, there can be assistance in purchasing homes.
“We need to make their homecomings real when troops return from overseas or here at home,” said Cuyahoga County Executive Ed Fitzgerald, a meMber of the board of the Land Bank, who stood in front of the MacMillan’s house in University Heights. Veterans can receive up to 20 percent discount on houses which are ready for occupants to move in.
“I know a lot of people who have deployed and they have come home and their apartment’s gone,” said MacMillian, who spent five years in the Air Force. He deployed several times to Iraq and Afghanistan. He and his wife, Elizabeth, who is expecting the couple’s first child, held hands during the ceremony on their front steps.
“For the county to step up and and say that it’s going to take care of the vets, take care of the people, and make sure they get what they need and have a home means a lot,” said MacMillan.
The house the MacMillans bought through bank financing was once a foreclosed property which had become an eyesore in the neighborhood. It was rehabbed and now the MacMillans are planning to move into the house.
It gives new meaning to the old phrase often uttered for returning service members – “welcome home.” All properties in the Cuyahoga Land Bank inventory are available for veterans via the Homefront program.