Update on our Project - There will soon be one less homeless family!

By
Real Estate Broker/Owner with Austin Texas Homes, LLC 453249

This is a story about God’s provision and many answered prayers. I wrote recently about our friends Will and Karen (not their real names) that we met a few months back when Will was standing on the side of the road with a sign that said simply, "We don't know anyone in Texas. Need to pay for our motel." 

Click here to read the full story if you’re interested

In a nutshell, Will and Karen were living in a daily motel in north Austin when we first met them. Since then, Will has begun working at Walmart in the Tire and Lube Express department as a technician, and we managed to raise enough money (over $13,000 so far) to purchase a mobile home for them and get it moved to a nice mobile home park in north Austin.

On Christmas night, we were talking with them about the prospect of raising enough funds, because we hadn’t had as much success as we had hoped. We spoke at length, then prayed about the situation. THE VERY NEXT DAY God showed up and orchestrated everything, including:

  • Finding the right mobile home for their needs
  • Negotiating an incredible price (worth around $18k – paid $10k including decks, propane tank, skirting)
  • Meeting with the manager of a great local mobile home park, and finding out that they would accept the home we had found
  • Raising an almost-unbelievable amount of money, largely through individual donors, some local but most via social media (92 separate donations to date). Fully half of the funds we raised came in ONE DAY!
I was amazed at how many people that I've never met in real life stepped in to contribute. Social media is powerful stuff sometimes.

Everything on the above list happened between Dec. 26th and Dec. 29th. As God continued to open doors, we realized that our initial discouragement was intended to make us all more fully lean on Him through prayer, faith, and trust.

Since then, we managed to get Will and Karen fully approved at the mobile home park, so we’re working on getting their new home moved, hopefully sometime next week.

God continues to bless our efforts for this family, including the fact that the mobile home park offered an incredible rent deal for our friends. The normal rate is $434/month + utilities, but the manager got them a special that gives them a rental rate of $199/month for the first year, $299/month for the second year, $399/month for year three, then the normal rate for years 4 and 5. I learned that ALL mobile home parks require an initial five-year lease, which was interesting news to me.

Part of moving a mobile home is making sure that it’s ready to be moved, which includes:

  • Removing the underpinning (“skirting”)
  • Removing the decks
  • Removal of an large propane tank (not needed because the park has central propane)
  • Cutting the electric line
  • Cutting and capping the plumbing and septic
  • Cutting and capping the gas line
  • Getting the A/C downcharged properly and safely transported and rehooked by a licensed technician
Will and I went out to the mobile home yesterday thinking that we could handle much of this ourselves. This was a naive assumption, and it was raining and 39 degrees, probably the worst day to attempt this project.
 
God sent help.
 
The neighbor got home and noticed us working and came over to talk. It turns out he’s an electrician, and he has friends who run a wrecker service (and own a forklift) just down the street. He offered to handle almost everything on our list for less than $100! The only items left were the skirting (which we have almost finished) and the A/C work. A local company, Evenaire Heating and Air Conditioning, heard about our project and offered to handle the A/C work for free, and if any parts are needed, they will sell them at cost. AMAZING! I was budgeting $350 for that part alone, and probably something in the $750 range for everything. God is good.
 
At this point, I only have to collect a couple of donation checks on Monday, deposit them, then coordinate the move, hopefully by the end of next week.
 
It’s awesome to be used by God in a tangible way. I feel blessed to be a part of this story that He is writing.
 
I will write more about this soon, but we also launched our new ministry website today. You can check it out at http://www.luke6ministries.org
 
 
 
Photo credit: .reid. via Flickr.com
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If you're looking for a home in the Austin area, you can also visit my primary website at www.austintexashomes.com.  Thanks!

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  1. Brian Rayl 01/05/2013 01:14 PM
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Rainmaker
442,700
Rose King
David Tracy Real Estate - Friendswood, TX
Friendswood / Pearland / Houston Bay Area

This is wonderful news, Jason! Our God is indeed AMAZING!

Jan 05, 2013 01:08 PM #1
Rainer
126,298
Brian Rayl
Home Value Leads - Highland Park, TX
Active Agent and Co-founder Of Home Value Leads

Jason, your story is amazing and inspiring. I have been contemplating for the past few months joining up with Habitat for Humanity but have never found the time. I think this week, it is time. 

Congratulations on all of your success and God Bless!

Jan 05, 2013 01:09 PM #2
Rainmaker
565,466
Jordon Wheeler
The Jordon Wheeler Group - Fairburn, GA
J W Group Real Estate Sales and Service

Hey Jason,

All praise to our wonderful Father for helping you achieve your vision for this family.  Can you imagine every broker catching your vision to provide a home for the homeless?

God's grace is on you my friend, and I thank you for sowing such a wonderful seed to this family.

Best of success to you brother!

Jan 05, 2013 01:24 PM #3
Rainmaker
1,495,772
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • Green • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

This family got angels in your faces:)

So happy to hear that. I'm sure, it was life changing experience for them , especially for their kids( hope, they will always remember to pay kindness and help forward!)

Jan 05, 2013 03:50 PM #4
Rainmaker
1,061,062
Sharon Parisi
United Real Estate Dallas - Dallas, TX
Dallas Homes

Jason, thank you for sharing this story filled with love.  Will and Karen are fortunate that you crossed paths.

Jan 05, 2013 04:22 PM #5
Ambassador
1,880,144
Gary Woltal
Keller Williams Realty - Flower Mound, TX
Assoc. Broker Realtor SFR Dallas Ft. Worth

Awesome recap of this journey Jason, and it is amazing how so many doors opened right when you needed them to.

Jan 05, 2013 10:36 PM #6
Rainmaker
307,513
Samantha Smith
214.422.0729 www.SamIAmHouses.com - Rowlett, TX
Sam I Am Houses, Simply Texas Real Estate
God is good! Thank you for sharing their story with all of us! You're an inspiration & a beacon of light that others can follow! Giving to others in need is top of my goals this year!
Jan 06, 2013 12:03 AM #7
Rainmaker
709,621
Bill Roberts
Brooks and Dunphy Real Estate - Oceanside, CA
"Baby Boomer" Retirement Planner

Jason, I am amazed. We all see these "homeless" people, but most of us don't get involved. Good for you that you did.

I hope 2013 brings you many blessings.

Bill Roberts

Jan 06, 2013 03:56 AM #8
Rainmaker
264,436
Pat & Steve Pribisko
Keller Williams Greater Cleveland West - Westlake, OH

Jason, this is such a heartwarming story.  We often get so caught up in the "real estate world" that we don't see the true need in right in front us.  You moved mountains.

Jan 06, 2013 04:16 AM #9
Rainmaker
2,503,694
Rebecca Gaujot, Realtor®
Vision Quest Realty - Lewisburg, WV
Lewisburg WV, the go to agent for all real estate

Jason, people are amazing, but God is ever MORE SO! Thanks for sharing your story ...bless you and all that have helped Karen and Will.

Jul 03, 2013 12:37 PM #10
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Jason Crouch

Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653)
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