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Living in your parents' basement? Here's help

Long Island companies are helping its workers with

Long Island companies are helping its workers with down payments on homes. (Undated) Credit: iStock

You're young and you want your freedom - instead, you live with your parents because of high housing costs.

But in what might be the first of its kind, a one-day event called "Need a Place to Live?" will try to link up young adults with landlords who have affordable apartments, real estate agents with entry-level homes for sale and agencies with grants to make living here easier on the wallet.

The free event, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on April 24 at Farmingdale State College, is organized by the nonprofit Action Long Island, an economic development advocate. Other workshops during the day will showcase opportunities for veterans and seniors.

"We were reaching out, trying to figure out how we can get young adults housing, and we discovered there's already a lot of housing out there that isn't being taken advantage of, especially right now with this market," said Lenae McKee, the group's development director.

For example, Nassau County last year had money left over in its home buyers' program, which gives $25,000 for down payments and up to $10,000 for repairs to those who meet income levels, such as $65,150 for a couple, said Dilfia Munoz, mortgage counselor at the nonprofit Long Island Housing Partnership.

She said taking advantage of several grants can make a difference to young Long Islanders who want to own a home but can't. "You're going to have the income to afford it but not the down payment."

At 24, McKee lives with her in-laws while looking for housing - and she's not the only one in her office.

"Young people like me, we can sit around all day long and twiddle our thumbs and say, 'Ugh, I want to live on Long Island. I want to stay out here,' " McKee said. "But until someone shows us that there are actually places to live out there, and things that can be done to help us afford these places, we're going to be sitting around our whole lives living in our parents' basements."

For details, call Action Long Island at 631-425-2700.

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