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Non-profit helps families overcome barriers to homeownership

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BELOIT (WKOW) -- Dozens of Wisconsin families will be celebrating the holidays this year in their first homes, thanks to a non-profit organization.

There's still some work to be done at Victor Labrado Duran and Adela Lopez's home in Beloit.

"Floors, moulding, the roof, siding, porches, there's still a some work to finish," Labrado Duran said.

But, it's their first home and the hard work is worth it.

"A better life and future for our kids, a better way of life," he said.

Adela's sister and her husband Manuel Guzman also moved in to their new house just a couple minutes away.

The two families were neighbors for years in Janesville, so sticking together was important.

"More than anything, because we have always lived together, it's good to be nice and close by," Guzman said.

They're two of a dozen families in Beloit and more than 150 in Milwaukee who got into new homes this year thanks to Acts Housing.

The non-profit based in Milwaukee helps families with financial or language barriers, by walking them through buying foreclosed homes.

They provide counseling, realtor assistance, loans and help start the rehabilitation process.

The homes are not in good condition when they buy them, but the families say while stressful, seeing their homes brought back to life makes it much more meaningful.

"You feel really good because you see how the house was and how it's going," Labrado Duran said. "It's very satisfying."

Both families say they couldn't have gotten to this point without the help from the program.

"We recommend it to a lot of people, it's for everyone, they can help everyone and it's very easy," Labrado Duran said.

While the nonprofit was founded to help immigrant families, they try to provide help to anyone who has barriers to homeownership and are willing to put the work into fixing up their homes.

Francisco Almenara

Reporter, WKOW

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