Investing in a Stronger Community

Alicia was born and raised in New Mexico and Lucas is a native of New York. Together they found their mutual home in the historic Barelas neighborhood of Albuquerque where Alicia’s family has lived for generations.

Both Alicia and Lucas have active careers in nonprofit work that allow them to share their passion for community. Alicia is a Youth and Community Organizer with Young Women United where she works to educate and empower youth to
become leaders in their community. Lucas is the Program Manager at The Barelas Community Coalition, an organization that partners with other nonprofits (including Homewise) to bring needed services and resources such as permanently affordable housing to the community.

After renting for seven years they decided to pursue homeownership. It was important to Lucas and Alicia that they live in the community where they were already contributing so much time and energy. They dreamed about having a home with extra rooms to start a family, and a yard for Cosmo, their pride and joy.

Shortly after starting their home search, Alicia and Lucas found exactly what they were looking for; they fell in love with a cozy four bedroom home with a sunflower garden in the back yard. Unfortunately, another buyer who was pre-qualified made an offer on the home at the same time. Lucas and Alicia were crushed and wanted to make sure they didn’t miss another opportunity. Lucas was aware that Homewise, one of the Coalition’s partners in revitalizing the Barelas area, offered free financial coaching with a Home Purchase Advisor as well as Homebuyer Education workshops. He and Alicia decided that Homewise could help them become better prepared for the home buying process.

They scheduled an appointment right away and met with Elena Gonzales, the Homewise Albuquerque Market Manager, in April of 2017. Three weeks later, that perfect house with the sunflower garden was back on the market. This time they were prepared and pre-qualified, and felt that the home was truly meant for them! Their second offer was accepted and they moved in just two months after their first visit to Homewise.

Cosmo now has a place to play and explore with plenty of grass and shade. Friends and family visit almost every weekend. Best of all, Alicia and Lucas look forward to starting a family in the community they are so actively passionate about. “I feel more connected in the work that I love doing,” says Lucas. They are both proud to be investing in their future here in Barelas.

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