On March 7, 2013, Paulette Savoy headed to her job at the ARC of Acadiana expecting it to be like any other day. However, once she arrived her manager approached her with a Habitat homeownership program application. The application was due the very next day, but with the help of her friend and manager, she was able to submit everything on time and was in fact approved for the program.
Paulette has completed her nine-week financial training course and feels better prepared to manage the expenses associated with owning a home. The family is now more conscientious of their spending and has since been able to save more money for the future. Additionally, Paulette has completed her required 300 hours of sweat equity and enjoyed meeting volunteers on the construction site. Thanks to the training she’s received while building, she feels more prepared to care for her own home.
Currently, Paulette and her five children- one of which has a physical disability- live together in a four bedroom apartment that is not handicapped accessible.
The family’s new home will be in a safer area and the kids are excited about having a yard. Paulette noted that she’s looking forward to having a mortgage to pay instead of rent, as those monthly payments will bring her closer to totally owning her home. Additionally, the family will be relocating from New Iberia, meaning her children will have new options for school attendance and Paulette will be in walking distance from her job.
Yet, for all the good things to look forward to, Paulette wasn’t always so optimistic: “When I first got into the program, it was very challenging for me.” Between her family responsibilities and work, it was sometimes difficult for Paulette to find time to complete her monthly sweat equity hours. However, she never lost sight of her goal, thanks to the manager that helped her apply to the program. While her friend has since passed away, Paulette said, “At times, I thought about giving up and quitting. But whenever I did, I would think about my friend that gave me the application. She wanted this for me, and I’m motivated by that encouragement.”
Construction of the Savoy family home began in August 2016 and was completed in March 2017.