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With your help, these families and more became first-time home owners this February! Together we are transforming lives and neighborhoods!


Imagine your home’s shower leaked so bad that when you showered, water would leak down through the floor and into the room below. Imagine the sewer backing up through your kitchen sink where you cook your meals. These are just a few of the issues Carleda has had to deal with in her previous rental.

With help from people like you, Carleda was able to build a brand new home for her three children for nearly the same cost has her troubled rental.

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Teanna’s daughter, Dakodah


For Teanna, homeownership means stability for herself and her daughter Dakodah. It’s a concept that Teanna realized early on in life. When Teanna was a child, before her mom bought a home, she says they moved around a lot.

“It’s stressful moving,” says Teanna, “I don’t want my baby daughter to have to go through that over and over again.”

Thanks to supporters like you, she could afford to build a home her daughter Dakodah will know for years to come.

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Ieasha’s daughter, Laila


“Being able to have a home my daughter can grow up in, where she knows she can come home to after school, it’s going to be a dream come true,” says Ieasha.

“When I was renting a two-bedroom apartment, I was paying pretty much the same as it will cost me to own my own home,” says Ieasha, “Now, I’ll have something that I can invest in for the future.”

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At 21 years old, many people begin to build the foundation for the rest of their lives. For 21 year old Laquesha, building that foundation is just as literal as it is figurative. As one of Milwaukee Habitat’s youngest homeowners, Laquesha has her sights set on a life of stability.

She says that this home will give her a level of comfort that she just doesn’t have renting.

“If something breaks, I won’t have to wait for the landlord to fix it,” says Laquesha. “Plus, I won’t have to worry about being evicted if [the landlord] raises my rent.”

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For Gchiann, this day will be one she’ll never forget. In this moment, she became the first person in her family to ever own their own home. As she searched for the words about what this meant for her children, Gchiann broke into tears of joy.

To some, homeownership may seem quite normal, but for many families in our community it can seem nearly unattainable. One in three Milwaukee renters pay half or more of their income on housing, making it extremely difficult to save for things like a down payment after all the other bills are paid.

With help from Brewers Community Foundation and Ryan Braun, Gchiann could afford to build a safe, stable home where she plans to raise her family for years to come.

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After looking into the current rental market, Shema didn’t like the idea of paying rent every month into something that wasn’t actually hers. Upon application to Habitat’s affordable homeownership program, Shema realized she could afford a home of her own for practically the same amount she would’ve spent renting an apartment.

Shema is not alone. Wisconsin Policy Forum’s Cost of Living Report said Milwaukee is “the most cost burdened city in the Midwest for renters.” Right now 1 in 3 Milwaukee renters are paying half or more of their income on housing.

“Habitat makes it affordable,” says Shema, “Plus this home will be better and larger than what I could’ve afforded to rent.”

Special thanks to Wells Fargo for helping make homeownership affordable for local families like Shema’s!

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