In July 1999, Francisco and Olga fled their native Venezuela as the country experienced great political upheaval.
They settled with their two young children in Norman, where they rebuilt their lives and became United States citizens.
Francisco now works for the Department of Homeland Security while Olga teaches at a bilingual preschool.
“We are proud of our country and proud residents of Oklahoma,” said Francisco.
After their daughter purchased a house, she asked if they wanted to come to live with her family. Instead, they decided it was time to become homeowners themselves.
They worried about being able to make home improvements on an existing house. At the same time, they didn’t think they could afford the down payment needed for a new house.
Using OHFA Homebuyer Down Payment Assistance made a huge difference for them.
“Qualifying for down payment assistance was very, very important. We had been saving to buy a house, but saving for a large down payment was hard,” said Olga. “Down payment assistance was life-changing for us.”
OHFA Homebuyer Down Payment Assistance meant they could purchase and build a new house with features important to them.
Francisco chose a lot in a developing south Norman neighborhood. As their new home was being built, Francisco visited the site daily.
“I took photos step-by-step from the first rock,” he said.
Now that they have moved in, they look forward to bicycle rides around the neighborhood pond and frequent visits from their grandchildren.
“People believe owning a house sets roots of a family. At our age, this house, that dream, we helped build in Oklahoma, grew flowers,” said Olga.
Francisco and Olga have encouraged their friends to utilize OHFA Homebuyer Down Payment Assistance to make buying a home more affordable.