After moving out and going to school full time for social services, the shelter offered me a job, I accepted the position and it was all good. I was working at the shelter, taking college classes and now getting some small modeling jobs to add extra money to the honey pot. I would read the paper daily and review the housing section of the classifieds. I was starting to contact homeowners for their rent to own properties, I was informed that I could not use my section 8 in a rent to own home. Dam or Duh, I had no ideal but I was getting one very quickly. I had to make some real-life choices and think in terms of the long run. I had used my section 8 for two years now and didn’t want that to be my future forever. I was back at the drawing board. I was thinking and praying. I needed a plan. A master plan.
One day while going through my mail, I opened a letter with a newspaper cut out in it about a first-time home buyers’ credit that was available. I unfolded the article and read it at my donated dining room table set. Being homeless made me real thrifty and money conscious. The children sat and did their homework and I read the article. My eyes fiend for every word after I read “Buy a Home”. Attached to the newspaper article was a yellow post it note that said “call if you want to buy a house”, it had a name and a number on it. His name was Mr. Smith and I was most certainly going to call, I had nothing to lose. Just call me Thurst McGurst, I wanted this badly .
I told Pearl that I wanted to buy a house, she was apprehensive and told me to slow down think and pray on it. By this time, me and Pearl had become coworkers as well and I was seeing her every day. It was almost like having my own Jimminy Cricket conscious in the form of Patti Labelle. (How I love Patti’s Sweet Potato Pie!) I took her advice, called and set up an appointment to discuss me becoming a homeowner. I was 23 years old.
Mr. Smith was very nice and personable. He stated he worked for a mortgage company and that he sent information out to people who he believed would qualify for the first-time buyer’s program. I was elated. He asked if I had children and if I did, that he could come to my house to make it easier for me to complete my initial paperwork. We set up a meeting to prepare the documents, I felt like this was my time to shine.
Mr. Smith came as planned, An older man, with a big brief case and clammy hands. We filled out a lot of forms, personal, private and financial. I gave him my paycheck stubs, lease agreement and bank statements. I felt like I was giving him my blood, first born child and a promise to spin hay into gold. I really needed this loan. I was way past ready to go. Within a couple of weeks, I heard back from Mr. Smith. He said that I was not making enough money on my job and that my income was not high enough to carry a loan by myself. I was on a salary at the shelter so increasing my hours would not help. I was the only person working in my entire immediate family and that left me with no one to ask to be a co-signer. I was going crazy in my mind. I had to figure this out. By me working full time at the shelter, I had given up government assistance and I was not receiving any child support. I asked Mr. Smith to keep my file open and to give me a couple of days to do some calculations and that I would call him back. I was determined to come up with the master plan. I had no other options. Day and night, I would work, go to school, play with the kids and think, how am I going to increase my income? I wanted, no, I needed a house of my own.
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