Every day last spring and summer, 5-year-old Vera would hop on the UTV with her dad to tag calves and check on cows at the family’s farm.
It gave the little girl something to look forward to every day, says Travis Gregorich, a beef farmer and customer of Farm Credit Mid-America and Rural 1st®. The timing was perfect: just two weeks before the nation shut down in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Gregorich family – Jenna, Travis and Vera – moved into their new Ohio home.
“It’s still too good to be true,” says Jenna.
Travis and Jenna are first generation farmers who turned to Farm Credit Mid-America and its country lending division, Rural 1st, to make their rural living dreams a reality. From loans and savings to education and networking, this couple maximized the resources the cooperative offers to lay a strong foundation for their future.
Travis and Jenna found even more benefit from Farm Credit Mid-America using a Farm Cash Management investment account and enrolling in its Growing Forward® program for young, beginning and small farmers.
When the couple found land with a farmhouse near a state route in Coshocton County, Ohio, it did not feel right at first. They worried about the traffic with Vera and their dog, Laney.
But then something shifted, and they took another look. A vision popped into their heads that would shape this family’s future – to build a home on the property. With the help of Farm Credit Mid-America and Rural 1st, that vision began to take shape.
While other banks shied away from the acreage Travis and Jenna wanted to buy and other lenders may have hesitated at some of the decisions made during their build, Farm Credit Mid-America and Rural 1st did not.
“Their team worked with us the best,” says Jenna, especially with flexibility on timelines and using spring water as a water source.
“The Farm Credit to Rural 1st connection helped us get full circle.”
“We live the rural life ourselves, so we understand the nuances of lending for land and homes in rural settings,” says Jennifer Croft, Rural 1st Loan Officer. “That’s why so many families like the Gregoriches turn to us to help make their country living dreams reality.”
Since March of last year, the family has enjoyed their new home and land, sitting on the front porch watching the sunset and cultivating in Vera a love of animals and the outdoors. Five years ago, Jenna admits she could not have predicted where they’d be sitting now: “It’s a dream I didn’t know I had.”
“We’re super happy,” adds Travis. “We want to make smart decisions, manage our money and grow.”
Every day Farm Credit Mid-America and Rural 1st collaborate with customers like the Gregorich family to do just that, helping them achieve their rural living dreams and get Closer to What Matters™ in the process.