“I had always dreamed of owning my own home but I really had no idea where to begin with the process. The only thing I knew about home buying was what I had learned by watching HGTV. Those people sure made it look easy! One of my friends told me about NeighborWorks so I got online and saw that they regularly hold a Home Buyer education class. I decided to educate myself and signed up for a class. I needed to learn all that I could. The class took up a whole Saturday, but it was a freezing cold Saturday and what else was I doing? The class was totally worth the time and the money. I learned so much! I am a self-employed artist and at the time of the class I was living at home with my mom. I was working very hard to build my business and save some money. After living with my mom for five years, I rented a cottage on Lake Bomoseen with my boyfriend for two years. Although it was lovely living right on the lake, the rental had many issues and by that time I was extremely tired of dealing with landlords.
“I kept all of the information I had learned in class in mind and a few months shy of when the lease for the lake cottage was going to expire I called NeighborWorks to make an appointment to meet with Tia for the one on one counseling I was promised in class. I met with Tia and the counseling I received was fabulous! She was warm and welcoming and made me feel completely empowered and ready to begin the process. She set me up with an application for a USDA loan, which as a single woman planning to buy a home on my own, it was the perfect option for me! I was approved for a loan and had the go ahead to begin looking. Tia recommended a few Realtors to me and I chose one who ended up being the perfect choice. From the time I began my search until my closing date, it was exactly three months. I think many people feel that buying a home is a hopeless prospect for many reasons. It isn’t true! Tia gave me the perfect amount of knowledge, guidance, and encouragement to go at it alone. But I was never really alone because NeighborWorks was only a phone call or email away. The thought of buying a home and having all those new responsibilities can be scary. However, after crunching numbers, I realized that my monthly payments and bills would probably not be too much more than I was paying for my half of rent and the shared bills I already had. I would just have to plan accordingly for the future and work extra hard to make it all work. So far I have been a home owner for one year and everything has gone according to plans. Owning home is a lot of work, but it is totally worth it! I work from my home and I get more done now that I have all of the space I need. I don’t have to worry about anyone getting into my belongings or having to move my projects from the dining room table in order to eat dinner. Everything has its place!
“I chose to buy a home in Rutland City because I had lived here on and off for many years after finishing up my degree at Castleton State College. I have made many friends in the area and feel very comfortable here. The neighborhood I live in is great for walking. Downtown is within walking distance and everything else is easy to get to by car. Rutland has everything you could need and there are a lot of new businesses and restaurants popping up all the time here. Rutland has an awesome year-round farmers market and a great library. At the time that I began looking for a home, there were a huge variety of unique properties for sale in the city at all price ranges. During my search for the perfect home I looked at about ten properties. It turns out the first one was the very best. I could totally see myself living and working in the first house and kept it in mind the whole time. I went back a second time and brought my family who agreed that it was right for me. There were just enough improvements done to the home by the previous owner to make it so I did not have to replace anything major. All I had to do was clean and paint and make some minor cosmetic improvements. With my realtors help the negotiations with the sellers were successful, the house passed inspection with ease, and my closing came and went. I was finally a homeowner and my dream had come true!
“It was time to get to work. There was a lot to get ready before moving in. My family and friends helped me clean, paint, and move my belongings in. The house really began to feel like home. After some investigation I soon discovered that my home is most likely a Sears Roebuck catalog home. I began doing research on kit homes and found out that Sears Honor Built homes were sold through catalogs during the years 1908 through 1940. You could order the kit and all of the piece came pre-cut and ready to assemble. They came on a box car to the train depot and you would pick them up by horse and wagon or by truck and bring them to your building site and assemble them yourself. Everything you needed came with it including paint and nails! If you look around Rutland you can see many ‘kit’ homes once you know what to look for. They were also sold by other companies which included Wardway, Aladdin, and Gordon Van Tine. Every time that I find out something new about the history of my home it makes me very excited!
“Buying a home was a big decision and takes lots of time, money, commitment, and hard work. However, I am so happy that I took the leap. I can confidently say that home ownership was one of the best decisions I have ever made. With each renovation that I make, dollar I spend, and minute that I put into working on improving my home, I feel more and more proud of where I live!”