My parents were first generation Americans, both born in the Philadelphia area shortly after their parents arrived on the east coast from Eastern Europe. My grandparents left horrid conditions in the hopes of providing and creating a better future for their children in the land of opportunity. And yes it did happen, both sets of my grandparents were able to secure work, to buy their own homes and to raise their children with the dream of a better life in this country.
My parents were hard workers and even though they did not finish high school, they managed to raise a large family and instill in my generation the dream of even a better life, one where hard work and continued education was a ticket to a more secure life and would enable us all to be homeowners.
And so it happened the dream was passed on to me and my siblings, we all got a minimum of a bachelor's degree, learned a few trades, and we all own houses or have owned houses.
The dream of homeownership equates to success on some level, a sense of freedom to own something that is yours, to decorate as you please, to dress it up for holidays, to invite family and friends in for parties and important events over the years. It is even a place where one can die with loved ones around, without the noise of the workings of a busy hospital, as both my parents did.
Homeownership has many joys and benefits, it also has many challenges and can often require sacrifices to keep one's head above water when times get tough and money get tight. But being your own boss in your own home is an experience that is still a dream passed down from generation to generation in this country, and I am glad my parents prepared me for attaining this dream.
As a Realtor, when I take buyers to visit houses I am part of their process of becoming a homeowner. I get to hear buyers begin to make a particular house into a home by visualizing how they would paint a room or bring in that dining room set or tear down that wall to make the kitchen more open. I am privy to hearing part of a buyer's process in selecting their next home. Some are renters finally able to purchase a home, others are upgrading or downsizing. In most situations, there is a dream of homeownership that starts the process and one particular house sparks those creative ideas and hopes for the future of homeownership.
The buying process and purchase of a house is the beginning, it is the steps and years after a purchase that make that house a home. Once a house is purchased, that is the time for the house to truly start becoming a home, layer on layer of memories make a house a home.
As I continue my career in real estate, I look ahead and I hope the dream of homeownership can evolve into a more inclusive, all encompassing scenario for all who want to own their own home; where all people are given the opportunity to be homeowners or have affordable housing, be it as homeowners or renters. No one should have to end up on the street because of personal hardship.
With all the creative people in this world and examples of various housing options from different corners of our country and other countries around the world, there has to be a way to ensure all people have housing, no matter their circumstances: be it temporary housing, co-housing, affordable housing, tiny housing, luxury housing.
No one should become homeless for long periods of time, ever, because they fall on hard times or lack major resources. What is needed is a broader awareness of the reasons for homelessness, so there can then be dreams and actions taken to create housing for all. That is my continuation of the dream my parents passed on to me, the dream of housing for all, no exclusions.
(Written for Homeownership - An ActiveRain Challenge - June 2019 - Thank you Debe Maxwell for this Challenge)
Food for Thought:
PA Housing Alliance -Homeless Network
Doug Durren and Gloria Todor, Realtors®, SRES®, SFR®
CENTURY 21 ABSOLUTE REALTY
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