Home purchase program for staff has a successful start
Last spring, the Affordability Task Force announced a new staff home purchase assistance program to address challenges that surfaced in the input gathered from staff related to housing affordability. The program started in April 2021 and to date, 120 staff have actively participated, and 18 staff have become homeowners through the program.
Available to benefits-eligible staff, the home purchase assistance program is a partnership with Landed, a personal finance company that helps employees in education, government and health care organizations with a unique shared-investment down payment program. Comprehensive home buying education, services and resources are also offered. The program was implemented as a joint effort from Faculty Staff Housing; Land, Buildings & Real Estate; and University HR. The Faculty Staff Housing website has full details to learn more.
The joy is real
One new homeowner is Whitney Sanford, a ServiceNow Operations Analyst in University IT. She reported that going from learning about the program to owning a home in 2-1/2 months was like a dream, and not as stressful as friends shared it could be, due to the support she and her family received from Landed. Her most memorable moment came after moving in. Whitney shared, “Our previous rental only had a shower, no tub. Seeing my water-loving son get to take a bath in his own tub for the first time was amazing.” She added that she and her family never figured they would own a home in the Bay Area, and think it’s very special they now do.
Another staff member who is a new homeowner is Marc Miguel Perez, a Life Science Technician II in Molecular & Cellular Physiology in the School of Medicine. Marc shared, “Being a first-time home buyer, I was clueless to the ins-and-outs of the process, but the Landed support team was well organized throughout and answered any questions I had. They were with me every step of the way so I felt confident when I was shopping for a home.” He added that everyone he interacted with was professional and acted with kindness, which he appreciated.
How to learn more about the staff home purchase assistance program
In December, a series of live, virtual information sessions are planned for staff; please register to attend on the Faculty Staff Housing website. Sessions will be held on December 1, 8, and 9; each live session is 60 minutes and family members are welcome to join. A recorded Spanish-language session is also available. Of course, at any time, staff can reach out to ask questions, and there is a link to request information from Landed on the Faculty Staff Housing site. Visit the Faculty Staff Housing website to get details about the Staff Home Purchase Assistance program, register for an upcoming information session, and view other available housing options.
Affordability encompasses many aspects of life
The Affordability Task Force found that affordability challenges span many different aspects of life, including child care, benefits, housing, transportation and more. Plans have moved forward to identify solutions in these areas, and during 2021, several new programs were introduced to help with the cost of child care and expand dependent care programs. As the university’s approach to flexible work options moves forward in 2022, affordability will be further evaluated by leaders to determine additional opportunities.