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Housing & Homelessness

The Joys of Homeownership

1 min read

There is a familiar expression which most homeowners have heard and undoubtedly said in moments of frustration: “Ah, the joys of homeownership!” When you buy a place to call your own, you sign up for the upkeep and repairs. The air conditioning breaks, the roof leaks, and the weather always seems to find new ways of causing problems.

The joys of homeownership, indeed.

The line playfully stems from a more important truth, however. There is real joy in owning a home, and people are willing to put forth more than just dollars to make it their own. When they do, individuals, families, and neighborhoods are all transformed. This is a reality that ACTS Housing, a Stand Together Foundation Catalyst serving diverse Milwaukee families looking to buy homes, works to make possible every day.

How Do They Do It?

Imagine entering a house with “good bones” that otherwise requires many improvements. Having cash to buy it outright—in the instance of foreclosed homes, this can be as low as $3,500—isn’t enough to prevent feeling overwhelmed. Traces of doubt creep in. What does the house need to get to code? Who are the trusted contractors and handymen who can help? How much will renovations cost? How long will they take? How does the buying process work? Can I afford all the renovations?

ACTS Housing, which predominantly serves low-income families, offers four core services: one-on-one financial and credit counseling, home brokerage, home-rehab counseling, and rehab mortgage lending to support required renovations to make homes safe, sanitary, and secure, particularly in cases of formerly vacant or vandalized foreclosures. Through the efforts of these teams, the organization demystifies what can often be a stressful and confusing process. They work with homebuyers from start to finish, from looking at homes, to buying, to renovating and moving in.

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