Grandmother of 9 living the "American dream"

By Molly Reuter - bio - email

Posted by Ellen Krafve - email

EAST TEXAS (KLTV) - With the words stimulus, recession and bankruptcy all around us, Americans are having a hard time focusing on the "American dream" these days - the dream of buying a new home. That said, the City of Tyler is trying to change that by helping low income families.

In this "East Texas Recession Survival Guide" we follow an East Texas woman, eager to make her dream come true.

The name is "Realizing our American Dream", and for five weeks, 50 year old Demelda Young learned what it took to become a responsible homeowner.

"We learned how to clean up our own credit first of all, and the second thing, they talked about [was] how to manage once we get the house and keep from going into foreclosure," explained Young.

She rents this duplex in north Tyler. A grandmother of nine grandkids, Young said she can't wait to have her own place.

"I'm expecting a back yard, and I'm anticipating on making them a grandmother friendly room," said Young. "So, I don't have to worry about them running through the house and breaking my stuff."

This "dream" of Young's is made possible thanks to the City of Tyler's "Homebuyers Assistance Program." Brenda Johnson, director of neighborhood services said a goal in the "Tyler 21 plan" was to increase rooftops in north Tyler.

"We started this program, so that as these houses are built that we can help citizens in Tyler become homeowners in those homes," said Johnson.

Homeowners like Young, who make 80 percent, or below the median income, and of course, have the desire to achieve that American dream.

"Everybody in the class was so enthused because we felt like we have done something to help us make it, even in this slow economy," said Young.

Five weeks, that Young says, have changed her life. The city says it will be a few months before Young gets into her new home. Another "Realizing the American Dream" course will be offered in April.

To find out more, click on the "Know More on 7" link where you will find a link called "Homebuyers Assistance Program."