This is a terrific homebuyer success story from our partners at HOMEteam!
After enduring sacrifice due to years of uncertainty, separation and even violence, Mosses’ and Ayen’s homeownership story is not just a celebration of personal achievement. Their story is also a reminder of the economic challenges and opportunities associated with homeownership. Studies have shown that homeownership is the fastest way to build intergenerational wealth.
Their journey began in 2006 when Ayen emigrated to Baltimore with four young children. At that time, she and Mosses had been living in Ethiopia for ten years, having fled to that country after enduring civil war in Sudan, a war that lasted twenty-one years. Mosses remained in Ethiopia for twelve more years. In 2008, Ayen moved to Manchester to be closer to friends and Mosses finally joined his family in 2018.
Both Ayen and Mosses have worked diligently and successfully in full-time factory jobs since their respective arrivals in this country. Mosses recently joined the staff of Easter Seals where he works as a residential instructor, a job he enjoys very much. They are appreciative that their children were able to experience the benefits of a formal education. And one of their daughters is enrolled in college today.
The concept of homeownership was familiar to them in their native country but not attainable. Only people who can pay fully for a plot of land and build over time or purchase a home outright are homeowners. Both involve having cash on hand, as a formal mortgage system does not exist. Owning a home of their own was nothing more than a dream. Setting themselves up in a totally new country and supporting four kids dampened their confidence in purchasing a home.
After seeing a flyer listing a home for sale, Ayen and Mosses took a step to realizing their dream. The listing realtor introduced them to Ryan Tufts at HarborOne Mortgage who connected them to Dick Patterson, a HUD certified HOMEteam counselor. They were able to complete HOMEteam’s online homebuyer education course at their own pace and, when finished, began working one-on-one with Dick. Due to the COVID pandemic and thanks to technology, they were able to meet virtually to map out an action plan specific to achieving their goals. Dick helped them develop a realistic household budget that enabled them to increase savings. The budget included making “practice mortgage payments.”
After four months, Ayen and Mosses were pre-approved for a mortgage. Through their experience in education and counseling, they learned about special loan programs, such as New Hampshire Housing's Cash Assistance Mortgage. Additionally, HOMEteam was able to qualify them and provide additional assistance for their down payment and closing costs in the form of a non-interest bearing, zero payment mortgage, which is due upon sale or refinance. Their real estate buyer agent knew of a home that was going on the market and guided them on making an offer. Their offer was accepted, and Ayen and Mosses became Manchester homeowners this past March.
"I am thankful that HarborOne Mortgage has access to the expertise, guidance, and programs provided by HOMEteam. It made all the difference for Mosses and Ayen. I am very happy for their family," says Ryan Tufts.
Mosses and Ayen have realized their dream in America. “This is our home in a community we love,” says Mosses. “We look forward to celebrating our first Thanksgiving holiday in it with all of our family.”
Want to speak with a counselor at HOMEteam and talk about your goals? Visit https://www.hometeamnh.org/!