Thursday, March 23rd, 2017

HomeOwnership continues NeighborWorks Week

Posted: Friday, June 17, 2016

The Pathfinder HomeOwnership Center is releasing the fourth and fifth of five homeownership success stories as they recently ended the week-long celebration nationally recognized as NeighborWorks Week. During NeighborWorks Week (June 4-11), Pathfinder HomeOwnership Center and other NeighborWorks organizations across the country will mobilize tens of thousands of residents, business people and government officials in a week of neighborhood change and awareness.

The Pathfinder HomeOwnership Center is part of the national NeighborWorks network, an affiliation of more than 240 non-profit organizations located in every state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. In 2015, the NeighborWorks network helped­­­­ nearly 356,000 individuals and families with affordable housing and counseling. The NeighborWorks network was founded and is supported by NeighborWorks America, which creates opportunities for people to live in affordable homes, improve their lives and strengthen their communities.

To celebrate the week, Pathfinder Services will be releasing five stories highlighting an individual or family who has realized their dream of home ownership thanks to Pathfinder HomeOwnership Center. The story contained herein is shared by Tosha Burkley, shown in her home in the photo.

Burkley is a proud single mother of two grown children. Her daughter is in the Varsity Singers at Huntington North High School and her son is serving our country in the U.S. Navy. Burkley is also a proud homeowner thanks to her hard work and guidance from the Pathfinder HomeOwnership Center, a NeighborWorks HomeOwnership Center.

Burkley contacted the Pathfinder HomeOwnership Center in March of 2014 to see if she might be able to afford to stop renting.  Like many working parents, Burkley’s middle-class income allowed her to make ends meet. But after paying high rent to be sure her children were in a comfortable home and safe neighborhood, there wasn’t a lot left over to save for a down payment. She felt owning a home was out of her reach until she spoke with Justin at Pathfinder HomeOwnership Center. “I went in to Pathfinder Services, and Justin explained the program and made recommendations on what I should do and I did those things,” Tosha explains. “Justin was wonderful to work with, very professional and he really treated me with dignity. Being a single mother, I wasn’t sure if being a homeowner was something I could do, but Pathfinder encouraged me that I could.”

She feels it was more than fate that lead her to her nearly move-in ready home in a quiet Huntington neighborhood. “One day I got routed down this street and saw the for sale sign in the yard. I thought it was a lovely home, so I called. When I first came through the home, it just felt like it fit our family,” says Burkley. Although she felt she had found her new home, Pathfinder Services recommended that Tosha wait a few months for a financing option that would put her in a better financial situation. Burkley explains, “My faith in God is a big part of who I am and although I really wanted this home, I felt I needed to be a good steward of what I had been given so I made the decision to wait.”  In the end, all the pieces fell in to place for Tosha – she was able to make a contingent offer on the home so she could wait for the better financing option and the seller accepted her offer.

Burkley has been in her home since May of 2015. For the last year, she has been doing small things to make her home her own. She’s touched up paint, done some landscaping, and warmly decorated her living and dining rooms. “Becoming a homeowner has saved me a significant amount of money compared to renting,” she says. “All-in-all, we are just so blessed to call this our home and for the guidance the Pathfinder HomeOwnership Center gave me along the way.”