Building a Foundation

March 26, 2020

Are you waiting to buy a home because you’re not sure the time is right? Homeownership can be a smart choice for people of all ages, and depending on your situation, it can be really smart to buy when you’re young. Read on to learn why.

When Valeria and Jesus got married about a year ago, they wanted to find a home of their own. Both grew up in Kansas City, Kansas. Although they’re in their early 20s, they were able to get pre-approved for a loan and quickly found a home they loved.

At first, they were discouraged. Closing costs were their biggest obstacle; although they had enough saved to pay the full amount, they had been hoping to use that money for for repairs and upgrades to their new home. Smart thinking! Once you become a homeowner, you are responsible for all your own repairs. The more you can take care of right away, the lower your overall maintenance costs, the higher the value of your home, and the better your financial future.

Fortunately, the couple shared their concerns with their family friend and tax advisor, who referred them to CHWC. Valeria left a message with Lisandro from our Homeownership team, who soon called back with an exciting update. Lisandro had evaluated their loan estimate and determined that, based on the home’s location, CHWC could provide a grant to cover some of their closing costs.

To help Valeria and Jesus make the most of their situation, Lisandro asked whether they had applied for closing cost assistance from their mortgage lender. The couple was surprised. They didn’t know that some banks have closing cost assistance available for certain loans. Because CHWC has a strong working relationship with local banks, Lisandro was able to point them in the right direction to find out more. In the end, the bank was able to provide closing cost assistance to close the gap for the family, and they only had to pay $150 total in closing costs. Time to get moved in and make those repairs!

Valeria and Jesus closed on their home last month and are now getting settled in. CHWC is going to keep working with them to help them pay off their house quickly so they can keep chasing their dreams. Valeria works at a local bank and wants to establish a long-term career there. She’s in school at a local community college to earn her Associate’s degree in Business, and will graduate at the end of this year. When asked about her future plans, she says she likes the idea of helping people through the homebuying process and wants to become a banker – possibly even a loan officer.

The young couple is ecstatic to own a home for many reasons, but they’re most excited about having their own space to renovate and upgrade as they please. “I have a vision for my house,” Valeria shared. “There’s a lot of potential, and I’m really excited to be able to alter everything to my liking. I also like that I don’t have to follow any rules.”

Like restrictions around pets, for instance. Valeria and Jesus love their dog and are glad they no longer have to worry about paying pet deposits or fees.

Here’s what Valeria and Jesus want you to know about homeownership. Depending on where you live and what your financial situation is, it can save you a lot of money. “My mortgage payment now is half [what I used to pay in rent],” Valeria explained. “It’s also mine – I can make as many changes as I want to and do whatever I want with it.”

Valeria also wants to share with our customers that she is a DACA recipient, and that your options in life don’t have to be limited by your citizenship status. “I don’t want people to think they can’t get a home loan because of that. It weighs on people […] Don’t let fear hold you back.” She wants to encourage people to reach out to a housing counselor and find out more about options available to them.

Congratulations to Valeria and Jesus on becoming homeowners! We are thankful to have been a part of your journey.

Are you unsure whether homeownership is right for you? Trying to decide how to best manage your money to prepare for the future? We encourage you to talk to a housing counselor for free today. We’ll work with you to make a customized plan that fits your goals and situation.