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Buy the Block

Greenlining for a Better Rochester

Supporting homeownership in neighborhoods that have experienced disinvestment

Some neighborhoods in the city of Rochester have experienced a long history of disinvestment, resulting in deep and ongoing challenges. Today, focused programs like Buy The Block are working to strengthen these neighborhoods by generating investment and creating excitement.

Buy The Block builds new single-family, high-quality homes in under-invested areas of the city. The homes are then sold to qualified first-time homebuyers who will spend no more than 30 percent of their income on housing.

The first phase of Buy The Block is focused on properties in Northeast Rochester, between Upper Falls Boulevard and Clifford, Clinton, and Hudson Avenues. Nineteen homes are complete and up to five more homes will be built later this year. Construction of up to thirty-two houses in the second phase of Buy The Block in Southwest Rochester begins in the summer of 2024. 

*Applications for Phase 1 are closed. Applications for Phase 2 will open in late 2024* 

 Model Homes 

For the first phase of Buy The Block, the City of Rochester partnered with Greater Rochester Housing Partnership (developer), Atlas Contractors LLC (builder), and Ibero American Development Corporation to construct and sell affordable, single-family homes on currently vacant, City-owned parcels.  The six model homes are:

NameDescriptionBRBathFoundationSq. Ft.Virtual Tour
The NortonAccessible Ranch21Slab on grade1,033Click here
The CliffordAccessible Ranch31Slab on grade1,365Click here
The Portland2-Story31.5Full basement1,357Click here
The Woodward2-Story42.5Full basement1,534Click here
The Durand2-Story32.5Full basement1,676Click here
The Ellison2-Story42.5Full basement1,729Click here

The diverse floor plans address a range of needs, including extra storage space for larger households and those with children; single-story homes for aging in place and/or mobility concerns; and accommodations for those with special needs. The homes will be Energy Star 3.0 certified and will include all-electric heat pump heating and cooling systems.

Applications for Phase I of Buy the Block are currently closed. Applications for Phase 2 in the Southwest quadrant will open in late 2024. Check back for more information.



Buyers must be first-time homebuyers with household incomes at or below 80% Area Median Income:

Household Size

80% Area Median Income

1 person


2 people


3 people


4 people


5 people


6 people


7 people


8 people


Buyer eligibility is ultimately determined by the City of Rochester Homebuyer Services staff. A list of required documents that are used to determine eligibility will be included in the application.

Applicants must agree to live in the home as their principal residence for at least 15 years. If the homeowner sells within that 15-year period, they must sell their home to another income-qualified owner-occupant who agrees to live in the home for the remainder of the 15 years. Any buyer within that 15-year period must be approved as income-eligible by the City of Rochester prior to entering into a purchase contract. All Buy The Block new homes are restricted to owner-occupancy for 30-50 years.


Buy The Block FAQs

Q: Who qualifies for new home buying?
A: Applicants must be income-qualified, first-time homebuyers who agree to live in the home as their principal residence for at least 15 years. Income-qualified buyers have household incomes at or below 80% of Area Median Income.

Qualification details 

Q: How do I apply to purchase a new home?
A: Applications for Phase I of the program are currently closed. Applications for Phase 2 will open in late 2024, please check back here for more information. If you would like be notified about program updates, please email us to be added to our contact list.

Email us

Q: How is the City of Rochester paying for the Buy The Block investments?
A: The first phase of Buy the Block is supported by $13.3 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. The City of Rochester is working with development partners to identify and apply for additional funding sources.