Homeownership gives wife Adrian a chance to give back


ADRIAN – Despite rising house prices, there is still help available for those who want to own their own home. And owner Cara Snyder is just one example.

Chronically homeless since the age of 17, Snyder had previously received rental assistance, but it never really kept her in a safe life.

“I have been homeless on several occasions. I looked for help. I qualified for help. Help was not there; things like that, ”Snyder said.

But then Snyder and his son Joaquin Ramos got involved in the community. Ramos ran for the Adrian City commission and was appointed to the city’s human relations commission. Snyder and Ramos began to attend events and became activists.

One day, Fran Brant, vice president of regional sales at Premier Bank, hosted a seminar on buying a house in a church, which Snyder and Ramos attended. Brant gave the crowd the basics of what people need to do to have a home, and one thing stuck in Snyder’s mind. It was the bank could establish a credit report for potential buyers so that they could get their own home.

Snyder had never really worked other than moonlighting and was on disability, but she had paid her bills on time and kept these documents. Brant gathered these documents and built Snyder’s credit history.

Brant said Premier created what he calls a “community mortgage.”

“This is a program that our bank has put in place to help loan people in low to moderate income census tracts; low to moderate income with very little down payment because this is a 100% fundraising program, ”said Brant. “As long as they don’t go over income limits, we’re just putting this together to help sell homes in the city and serve more people. “

The loan is a 30 year fixed rate mortgage with an escrow account. Snyder had to deposit $ 500 of his own money and was able to ask the seller to help him with closing costs. With the funding in place, Snyder secured a real estate agent and within 30 days she had her home at 422 S. Winter St. on November 7, 2019.

“We love to help people,” Brant said. “Whether it’s a low down payment or low income or not, we have programs that can meet people’s needs.

Having a roof over your head is something you take for granted. But getting a home for her and her son meant the world for Snyder.

“It’s absolutely amazing what permanent housing will do for a person, for their mental health and their physical health, without even trying. Just to have that security, to have that safe space where you can make your plans and goals and focus on improving your life, because you don’t go crazy because of your life situation, ”Snyder said.

Synder said it was about meeting a person’s basic needs. Having a home changed the trajectory of her life.

“When you give people a home, as long as it’s a safe home where they can have their space and give them self-determination, most people are going to make the right decisions and do the right thing, they’re going to be successful and move on. in life. No one wants to be homeless. No one wants to be addicted, hurt, depressed, suicidal, whatever. Nobody wants to be like that, ”Snyder said. “One of those important first steps is giving people a roof over their heads so they can focus on other things, because when you worry about where you are going to eat, how you are going to eat, where you are going to sleep , how are you going to sleep, how are you going to clean; anything, you can’t get help without an address. A roof is just essential for a person’s success in life.

Now Snyder and Ramos pay him forward. They are involved in so many boards and community action groups that it is difficult to count them.

Snyder is the treasurer of the M Society and the All About Adrian Resident Coalition, under the umbrella of Lenawee County Habitat for Humanity. She was recently appointed to the Consumer Action Committee as the Children’s Representative with the Lenawee Community Mental Health Authority.

Ramos is the chairman of the board of directors of All About Adrian, the vice-chairman of the City of Adrian’s human relations committee and the secretary of the Democrats of Lenawee County.

They also participate in other volunteer projects and regularly attend city council meetings to stay informed about what is happening locally.

They give people a hand even though they still have to work on a strict budget and have a long way to go, Synder said.

“We have to be intentional, but it’s so much better and we want others to be better because we know what it’s like to struggle and to suffer and to feel horrible and to really want to give up, and a roof has makes a huge difference in this, “Snyder said.” We don’t want to give up anymore. We want to push further. We want to take people with us and help them and make them a better community. “

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