Jennifer is the kind of woman who likes to lead by example. She maintains a fulltime job and works hard to make sure her family is provided for and her bills are always paid. As a single mother to her 15-year-old son and her 22-year-old niece, finding an affordable home has been difficult. With rent costing nearly 50% of what Jennifer makes in a month, she says that every day is a struggle. Plus, with yearly rent increases, she fears that one day the cost will be beyond what she could ever afford.
More recently, she’s added another family member to her household. In November of 2020, Jennifer’s mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and dementia. “She will never be able to live on her own again, and her mental state is going to continue to decline,” Jennifer says. Since then, her mother has been sleeping on the couch and Jennifer’s living room has become a makeshift bedroom. “She already struggles to function mentally and the lack of space, privacy, and place to call her own is affecting her negatively,” she says.
Jennifer was starting to feel like she was in over her head. “I’ve tried to find a bigger place to rent, but I can barely afford what I pay now,” she says. Still, Jennifer was determined, so she reached out to partner with Habitat. Since then, she’s been working harder than ever to make her dream of homeownership a reality. She feels proud to be leading by example and demonstrating for her children that doing what’s right always pays off.
Now that affordable homeownership is within reach, Jennifer is hopeful that one day, she’ll also be able to take in her five- and eight-year-old nephews who are currently in foster care. “All kids deserve to be in a loving and safe family,” Jennifer says. “It breaks my heart to see what they are going through.”
“Your program has given me hope,” Jennifer says. With an affordable home, she will be able to provide for her family without struggling to get by, everyone will have the space they need, and Jennifer will finally get the peace of mind she deserves.