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Joe Burns was born and raised in Dumas, Arkansas, and was inspired to start a business that would provide quality housing to low-income people.
“I looked around my home town and saw the severe need for proper housing that was a challenge to many people, particularly to those that had lower incomes.”
Initially, Joe started his business by buying and renting houses. While he was doing that, he attended Southern Good Faith Fund’s First Step™ FastTrac® class to carry out a study on the feasibility of providing new homes for low-income people.
“My concept was to help my target market buy new homes by helping them access credit counseling, financing with no or low down payments, fixed mortgage payments, and home ownership training. I was able to identify two organizations that would provide the financing and education for my customers.” And I was also able to find affordable capital that I could use for construction for my houses.”
Joe identified his first customer in 2005 and started construction on his first home in November 2006 in Pine Bluff.
“Starting a business in the construction industry is a huge challenge. SGFF’s Business Development Center helped me research the market, the industry and also find various sources of financing”.
Joe plans construction of a second home in Hazen, Arkansas.