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The Renaissance Pointe community is located just a mile from downtown and is in the midst of a dramatic revitalization. Recently, 66 brand-new homes were completed and all are occupied. Ren Pointe

Biggs TC Development, developer of the $11 million initiative, began construction on the lease-to-own homes in the fall of 2011. The development is funded with a mix of private investment, state low-income housing tax credits and City of Fort Wayne federal housing dollars. The three- and four-bedroom homes with front porches and attached garages were built on vacant lots along John Street, Gay Street and Weisser Park Avenue.

The effort is a sort of "homeownership incubator" for families who want to live in the Renaissance Pointe community, but whose credit condition or other circumstances make home ownership difficult. After 15 years of leasing, families have the option to purchase the home at a reduced cost. As a condition of leasing, residents agree to work with Biggs TC Development and its partners to build or repair their credit status in order to help them qualify for a traditional mortgage.

Prior to development of the 66 lease-to-own homes, the City of Fort Wayne invested several million dollars to improve infrastructure in the area. New water and sewer lines and taps, new street lights, new or rebuilt sidewalks and new signs were installed, along with a trail that runs throughout the neighborhood. More than 25 Federal grants were also awarded to current Renaissance Pointe homeowners to help them make improvements to their properties.