“It would be an amazing privilege to put blood, sweat, and tears into a home that is ours.”
~from Nikita Norris and Regina Hunter’s application letter
Nikita and Regina have the kind of fairy-tale love story that many wish for and few experience. When they met at work, they both knew they had found “the one.” One year later they welcomed their daughter and began their life as a family.
As a self -described “power team” they work together to accomplish their goals. When Nikita goes to work as a Head Start teacher in Etowah, Regina stays home with their daughter and studies. When Nikita returns home, she goes to work at the Olive Garden, and he becomes the caregiver. They cherish the little time when they can all be together. This is one of the challenges of supporting a family in Asheville on a modest income.
As a native of Asheville, Nikita has been a witness to the rise in the area’s popularity and in turn, the steady rent increases. With most apartments out of their price range, the family was grateful to find an income-based apartment in Arden. It wasn’t ideal, but it served their needs at the time; or so they thought.
Within a year, mold began seeping through the walls and roaches crept in from a neighboring apartment. The neighbors were loud, and there was no room for an active toddler to play. Their complaints to the leasing office fell on deaf ears, and while they dealt with many issues on their own, most were out of their control. They came to realize that cost is not always measured in dollars and cents.
When a family friend told them about Habitat, they did not hesitate to apply. They were approved to purchase a 2-bedroom home in Habitat’s Arden neighborhood, and not a minute too soon! With a baby on the way, the family will be greeting their second child and moving into their brand new 3 bedroom, energy efficient home at the same time.