Homeownership “a dream come true” for Nancy and family

Most people start off the new year writing down their goals and aspirations until the next January rolls around. But Habitat homeowner Nancy began 2024 having already accomplished her lifelong dream – buying her own home.  

“It’s a dream come true; I never thought in my life I would have a home,” Nancy said. “My goal was this house.”  

Four years ago, Nancy decided to apply for a four-bedroom home at Alder Commons, Habitat’s 8-home community in Hillsboro. Things were slow moving with the pandemic, but Nancy and her family remained patient and hopeful about the future.  

On Dec. 29, 2023, Nancy picked up her keys. She and her two youngest daughters, ages 17 and 8, moved in at the start of the new year, becoming the first person in her family to own a home. 

“I still cannot believe it,” she said. “My dad passed away four years ago and sometimes I wish he could be here to see this.” 

A proud mother of four, Nancy is overjoyed to provide her children with their own space to play, eat, do their homework, and talk on the phone with their friends. She overheard her youngest daughter excitedly tell her friends that she has her very own room in the new house.  

The white-walled living room is bathed in late winter sunlight as Nancy shares her story. While nature is beginning to wake up for spring outside, Nancy and her family also prepare for this next chapter of their lives. Their reality is entirely different this season.  

Years ago, Nancy was in a bad living situation. She wanted something different for her family and knew things had to change. She applied to Habitat and found out she’d eventually become a homeowner but needed a stable place for her and her daughters to stay in the meantime.  

A chance encounter with old friends at the Forest Grove Wednesday market led to Nancy and the girls moving in with the couple for three years as they waited to move into their new home. Their friends took them in graciously and were sad to see them go when it was time to leave. Although Nancy and the girls enjoyed their stay, they couldn’t help feeling like they were in someone else’s space.  

The three of them shared one bedroom, which was particularly difficult for Nancy’s teenage daughter. Nancy was self-conscious that her cooking would make the house smell, or that they might overstay their welcome. That wasn’t the case, but it was nonetheless a relief to move into Alder Commons and have a home of their own. 

She said she loves everything about it: the openness of the hallways, the staircase, the large bathrooms, the living room, and the spacious kitchen. 

“We feel more comfortable,” Nancy said. “I think it’s a positive impact for us.” 

Her two older sons, ages 23 and 22, are in college and the US Air Force, respectively. Her oldest son wants to become a physician’s assistant, and eventually plans to move in with his mother and sisters.  

Nancy’s oldest daughter excels in school and wants to become a lawyer. Her youngest, at 8 years old, wants to open up an ice cream shop, or maybe become a veterinarian. The world is her oyster, after all.  

Nancy’s 8-year-old daughter has her own room filled with books, dolls, and stuffed animals.

Nancy never received her high school diploma or GED, and she has always motivated her four children to graduate from high school. After that, she said, they can make their own decisions and she will support them.  

While putting in her Habitat participation hours, Nancy volunteered at the Alder Commons and Denney Gardens construction sites. She built and painted alongside her future neighbors, staff members, and volunteers who taught her not only about construction, but about herself.  

“All the people I worked with were incredible and positive,” she said. “I feel like a better person to be around all of them.” 

She also enjoyed volunteering at the Beaverton ReStore because of how neat and organized everything was, and how kind the staff and volunteers were.  

“When you’re there, you feel a positive energy,” she added.  

Nancy works in quality control at Epson, where she has worked for 15 years. She has worked her way up in the company and plans to keep climbing the ladder for the good of her family.  

“If you want something, you need to be persistent and organized,” she said.  

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