After four years of living in a rented room, Ernestine Richard now owns a three-story home on Newhall Street in New Haven.
“I waited a while because my credit all that plays a part in buying a house,” Richard said at a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday morning.
Richard was able to buy the house a price she can afford thanks to the Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven (http://www.nhsofnewhaven.org/), a non-profit organization that offers home buyer education courses for low-income residents.
“How to budget your money and how to go about working with people, it really brings you to another level to say, I can do this,” Richard said about her experience in the classes.
Part of the Neighborhood Housing Services’ mission is to acquire and revitalize rundown properties in neglected neighborhoods. Funding comes from donors, foundations, banks and businesses.
“This house was a complete ruin before we took title to it,” NHS Executive Director James Paley said. “The wiring, the plumbing, the roof, the windows, the insulation, the kitchens, the bathrooms, the heating system, everything is new in this house”
Moving in this week gives Richard, a Yale-New Haven Hospital employee, a new start.
“I would advise anybody that’s trying to get a house that don’t have a lot of money to come to neighborhood housing because they have really blessed me,” she said.
Right across the street, NHS has found a homeowner for another house scheduled to go through similar renovations.