There's a new website for Spanish-speaking first-time home buyers in and around Sioux Falls. The Sioux Empire Housing Partnership spent nearly a year making a carbon copy of its current site in order to create an easy tool for the Hispanic population.
"The Hispanic community is the fastest growing community in Sioux Falls," SEHP Executive Director Jim Schmidt said.
According to the latest census in 2010, 4.4-percent of the Sioux Falls population is now Hispanic or Latino. While there are plenty of resources for English-speaking residents looking for a home, Maddie Gutierrez says there aren't many options for those who use Spanish as a first language.
"I think this is a great stepping stone for the hispanic community to begin to set roots here in Sioux Falls and to expand the diversity here in the city. It's a very basic need and it's an important need," Gutierrez, with the Chamber of Commerce, said.
The new Spanish-language option on the Sioux Empire Housing Partnership's website includes numerous resources, ranging from a calculator to estimate payments to a list of banks and information on home buying classes.
"We live in a very diverse city, thanks be to God, here in Sioux Falls. I've been there, trying to buy a home. Even though I speak English, I must confess, doing that is a very daunting task even if you speak English," Rev. Natanael Lizarazo of First Lutheran Church said.
The site is a one-stop shop for local Latinos looking to live the American dream.
"We are getting more and more Spanish-speaking families coming to town and it is important for them to access an easy website where they can complete applications and call if they have any questions, if needed," Raul Guajardo of First National Bank said.
If the new website is a success, the partnership could make more for people who speak other languages here in the region.