Consumer-Controlled HousingWhy This Is Important
Owning one's own home is one of the most basic elements of the "American Dream". People who own their own homes experience a sense of control over their lives that is difficult to achieve in rental situations. Owning one's own home provides freedom and stability; the owner can decide when to move, what color to paint, who can visit and how long they can stay. Owning one's one home is a symbol of membership and participation in one's community. Owner's have roots. Owner's pay taxes and contribute to the maintenance and improvement of their community schools, parks, roads and libraries. Owner's have pride in ownership and enjoy the opportunity to make their homes a reflection of themselves, their tastes, and their preferences. Ownership also has significant economic implications. Owners build wealth as they pay for their homes. Owners who have income enjoy tax benefits in deductions for the interest and property taxes they pay.There are also important responsibilities in home ownership that must be thought about carefully. Owners must plan and save to have enough money for the down payment for their homes. People who receive publicly funded health and cash benefits, must plan and save carefully so that their benefits are not lost as the money they save for their down payment increases. In more and more communities the prices of housing are increasing rapidly and more and more people (with and without disabilities) need help in paying for their homes. Some people try to find people to live with them and to pay rent or to buy the house with them to make it more affordable. Owners need to be prepared for repairs and upkeep of their homes. Paint falls off, grass grows, windows crack, washing machines break down, roofs leak and on and on. Owners need to have skills to do things around the home, friends and family to help, and/or money to pay others to do the work for them. Some owners need to make the house accessible to them by building ramps, changing door handles and making other modifications. They may need to know how to get help with these jobs.There are many things to do and think about when people want to buy a home of their own. Still thousands of people with disabilities have purchased homes on their own and with the help of others. The products in this department help people thinking about buying a home learn from the experiences of all these other people.