Meet the people we help
Buying a home can be complex. The Boston Home Center is here to help you move smoothly through the complicated homebuying process. We offer classes, help you fix your credit, and even help you with downpayment assistance!
Jumping for joy
A new home will make anyone jump for joy. Patricia Brown, a former public housing resident, was delighted that she was able to buy a new home through a Department of Neighborhood Development (DND) lottery. When she moved into her home at Olmsted Green in Mattapan, Mayor Martin Walsh stopped by to congratulate her, her nine-year-old grandson Gabryel, and her mother Esther Farrell.
Patricia bought the home with down payment and closing cost assistance from the Boston Home Center. She also received a relocation benefit from the Boston Redevelopment Authority as part of the Whittier Choice Neighborhood Initiative, and coaching support from Economic Mobility Pathways (EMPath) and the Boston Home Center.
The development of homeownership units at Olmsted Green was funded in part through the Neighborhood Housing Development Division (NHD) of DND and Boston's Neighborhood Housing Trust.
Thrilled by her new home in a vibrant, culturally diverse neighborhood, Massiel is amazed at her good fortune. Her five-year-old daughter’s future is secure.
Massiel applied for the Roxbury Tenants of Harvard Association, Inc. (RTH) lottery. With City of Boston-approved lender Santander Bank helping her to secure a MHP ONE mortgage and the Boston Home Center helping with down payment and closing costs, Massiel is now celebrating the joy of homeownership on the rooftop deck of the condominium building.
Maria and Anildo
Maria and Anildo came across a large two-family Victorian home while house hunting on the internet. The moment she stepped inside, Maria knew it was the home of their dreams. And although Anildo realized the house was a diamond in the rough and needed substantial renovation, he trusted Maria’s eye for design.
Estimating that they could defray the renovation costs by renting the second unit, they decided to go for it and restore the house. loan.depot, one of our approved lenders, structured the mortgage financing using a Mass Housing loan product supplemented with down payment and closing costs from the Boston Home Center.
The best part of owning a house? "Pride of ownership," says Maria. As you can see, they are now polishing their diamond.
Minoshia enjoys having a glass of wine on the porch of her new three-family home in Dorchester with Tasia and Ruben, her dogs named after her favorite American Idol contestants. Minoshia is a graduate of the DND's Homebuyer 101 education program and the Massachusetts Affordable Housing Alliance (MAHA) Homeowner 201: Tips for New Homeowners class. She also received downpayment assistance from DND, working with Stoneham Bank, a Boston Home Center participating lender.
Oscar and Dilia
Oscar and Dilia are the proud new owners of a two-family property in Dorchester. Pictured here with their parents are Janier (age nine), an attentive big brother to Spiderman fan Jadiel (age 4) and the adorable Jadelis (11 months). They worked hard to save for a new home and prepared by taking the DND's Homebuyer 101 education program and the Massachusetts Affordable Housing Alliance (MAHA) Homeowner 201: Tips for New Homeowners class. Oscar and Dilia also received downpayment assistance from DND and a Massachusetts Housing Partnership (MHP) ONE Mortgage, working with Santander Bank, a Boston Home Center participating lender.
Jesse and Elizabeth
Jesse and Elizabeth of Roslindale participated in the Neighborhood Homes Initiative (NHI) homebuying lottery program. They were thrilled to be able to purchase a newly-renovated, three-bedroom single-family home on Dwinell Street in West Roxbury — the very first property offered through the Neighborhood Homes Initiative. Buyers of NHI properties are selected through a lottery process. They must meet the income guidelines for the affordable unit. The young family of three closed on their new home in August 2016.
They became the first of many families whose dream of homeownership was realized with the help of The Boston Home Center and the NHI program.
When homeowners need help repairing their home, upgrading a heating system, or improving their property, the Boston Home Center offers help in many ways.
Just like Florida
Using the Senior Home Repair Program, Gerald had plumbing, roofing, and heating improvements made to his home.
"This house had a draft like you wouldn't believe," he explained. "They put that new heating system in at the end of the winter. A friend of came in and he couldn't believe it because he had his coat on. The coat came off. He said, 'I feel like I'm in Florida, for crying out loud.'
"You guys did great. Every since I met you you've been on time, whatever you said has been done. And they did good work. The plumbing contractors were all here the same day. The roof, you gave me a date, and I couldn't believe how quick they were and how efficient.
"I'm very happy with the whole program. it came out very well. I really appreciate it."
They were excellent
"The house was going to burn down if I didn't do the electrical work," George recalls.
He called the Boston Home Center and spoke to Antoinette Elibox, who helped him get the work going.
Working with the Home Center, he made repairs to the roof, the basement, outside porch, two bathrooms, and the electrical cabinet of his West Roxbury home.
"The process was very smooth, and the contractor was very good, and the people on the phone were very good, and the people from the city were excellent. Everyone was excellent. I've recommended it to four other people already. I'd use it every day of the week if I could," he says.
A perfect bathroom
Water from Hilda's bathroom plumbing was leaking down into her kitchen. "It was horrible!" she told us.
Luckily, a friend of her son recommended the Boston Home Center's Senior Home Repair program. After her project manager assisted her with having her bathroom fixed and the kitchen ceiling painted, her bathroom is now "Perfect! I love it!"
The Home Center made other repairs as well, including a installing new garage roof. Hilda is very enthusiastic about the Senior Home Repair program because "They are nice people, they do a great job. I am happy with everything!"
Help with heat
Mr. Joseph Cappuccio of Roslindale got help through the Seniors Save heating system replacement program. The City replaced old, inefficient oil boilers in both units in his home with new, energy-efficient heating systems.
Seniors Save is a proactive program that helps income eligible seniors replace failing or inefficient heating systems with new, energy efficient systems. New heating means that seniors lower their risks of having to handle heating emergencies during the winter. They'll also see reductions in their energy bills. The money they save lets them expand their budgets for other necessities, including medications and food.
Mr. Cappuccio said the technical help and "hand holding" from the Home Center’s Seniors Save staff was the only thing that made it possible for him to take on this challenging home repair project.
Lead-free homes are safer homes
Ms. Claudette Gates of Mattapan participated in the City’s Lead Safe Boston program. The project entailed de-leading two units of her property on Callender Street.
One unit was vacant, and needed to be de-leaded prior to a homeowner with a Section 8 voucher moving in. The other unit was rented to a low-income family with a small child.
Ms. Gales is a retired, lifelong resident of Boston. She was very happy with the Boston Home Center’s Lead Safe Boston program, which helps make Boston homes safe for young children.
Through the Boston Home Center's home repair programs, Mr. James Wade of Dorchester's triple-decker received:
- all new exterior siding
- new front and back porches, and
- new storm doors and insulation from Action for Community Development (ABCD), a valued Home Center partner.
As a result, his property is structurally safer and physically more attractive, and Mr. Wade reports that it is much warmer and less expensive to heat! Mr. Wade, a long-time Boston resident, is "very appreciative" of the help he received from the Boston Home Center home repair programs.