Housing Choice Voucher Homeownership: ‘Investing in Myself’

By OHFA Communications
Donna and her home
Donna enjoys gardening at her new home.

After years as a renter, Donna purchased her first home through the OHFA Housing Choice Voucher Homeownership Program.

At the invitation of OHFA’s Family Self-Sufficiency Team, Donna attended an OHFA information session early last year to learn how she could purchase a house through the Housing Choice Voucher Homeownership program.

Eager to start the journey toward owning a home, Donna signed up for the program that day. Last March, Donna completed a homebuyer education class through Neighborhood Housing Services. She worried she may not be able to buy a house given the pandemic.

“They told us that no matter what, just keep saving and focusing on your goals,” Donna said. “So that’s what I did.”

For the next six months, Donna worked toward her goal of owning a home with the guidance of Lanisha Hines, her Family-Self-Sufficiency/Homeownership Specialist at OHFA. Lanisha encouraged Donna to continue building her savings.

When the time came to start her home search, Donna knew exactly what she wanted.

“I like mid-century, older homes,” she said. “I wanted something small.”

The day she toured the quaint white house at the end of a side street, Donna knew she was home.

After years of apartment living, she enjoys living in a quiet neighborhood where she often reads on her front porch. A large backyard means plenty of room to grow fruits, vegetables, and flowers.

“I enjoy being able to go into the yard, plant, and enjoy nature.”

Through the Community Action Agency of Oklahoma City and Oklahoma/Canadian Counties, Donna paired funds she saved with down payment and closing cost assistance. She now uses her Housing Choice Voucher to help make mortgage payments instead of paying rent.

“I am on a fixed income due to disabilities,” Donna said. “This assistance really helped me.”

Donna encourages fellow renters to “take a chance” if given the opportunity to buy a house.

“Understand the importance of saving and investing in yourself. This is a great opportunity,” she said.


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