Stability: An important benefit of homeownership
June 6, 2023
“The stability of owning my own home is huge.”
During National Homeownership Month, BIAW is featuring stories of real homeowners, builders, remodelers and others who share why homeownership matters.
Our first story comes from BIAW’s Policy and Research Manager, Andrea Smith, MPA, who shares how she became a homeowner and why it’s so important to her to help others find homes they can afford.
“For a lot of my upbringing, I didn’t have a stable home and a lack of stability is really detrimental. My mom and I were homeless for about two years and, if we couldn’t get into a homeless shelter, we typically would stay with friends. That could be anywhere from a spare bed in a basement, an air mattress, or sometimes even an inoperable vehicle in an unheated garage.”
“Then, in 2003, when I was in third grade, my grandparents took me in and raised me until I left the nest. It took me quite a while to adapt to living with my grandparents after years of my mom taking me from one spot to another but it was nice because it gave me a sense of place.”
Things started coming together
“Because I experienced homelessness, I was not able to read until fourth grade. Then, things started coming together. It’s a testament to the stability that home offers you and how it gives you the ability to focus on the things that really matter.”
“My experience made me realize that having a safe place to live is really, really important. When I was living with my grandparents, I never had to worry about a roof over my head.”
A big milestone
“Being able to purchase my own house was a big milestone.”
“In 2019, my one-bedroom apartment was about $995 a month. Then, I found out it was going up to $1,500. I decided it made sense to purchase a house because my mortgage payment would be about the same as the new rent payment. It made financial sense – and I wanted a yard for my dog.”
“It was really exciting to buy a house, but also really scary.”
This is my space
“Now, there’s a sense of ‘this is my space, I’m going to take care of it more than ever took care of anything else. I bought it with my own money.’ I’m also super motivated to make my neighborhood a better place for everyone, so I joined the HOA board.”
“Renting is so different. There aren’t as many opportunities to connect with people and I wasn’t as invested in my community. I had never wanted to attend a neighborhood association meeting until I became a homeowner.”
Ownership of my financial future
“Owning a home is also being able to have power over your investment and having ownership of my financial future is really important. I’d rather bet on myself than government or regulatory agency to ensure that I’m financially secure.”
Housing prices are out of control, but you have the power to help stop the rising cost of homes in Washington and make more homes available to buy! Sign up to receive the Cut The Costs Action Plan with 10 easy steps you can take to change the course of home prices in WA state. Get your action plan today!