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The Lyons Family Moves Into
The Community at Edgewood


Photo by Ann W. Olson

The hills of Eastern Kentucky have long been the inspiration for folk songs, poems and stories. Over the years, many families have come to call these hills home. For some, this was their destination; they heard the stories of the beauty, tradition and culture that define this area. Others were merely passing through, seeking shelter from the storm, and as if discovering a rare gem, made their homes here. Many wanted a fresh start in a place where they could work, learn and play; a place where a family feels safe in their home. Jennifer Lyons and her family came for all of these reasons. Jennifer is a young woman who describes herself as independent and industrious. While living in Xenia, Ohio, her independence was tested. She went through a divorce and was left with two small children. Jennifer was dealt another blow when her father passed away, making it necessary for her mother to move in. Now living in an overcrowded situation, caring for her mother and children, Jennifer had a growing concern for her family and their quality of life in Xenia.

She had been to Eastern Kentucky several times visiting friends and loved the area and the people. On one of those visits, while listening to the radio, she heard an advertisement that caught her attention. Jennifer said, “I can’t remember exactly what it said, but it made me start thinking about a possible life in Kentucky.” Jennifer called the number in the radio ad and was soon working with a Home Loan Specialist from Frontier Housing. After a few visits and much consideration, she chose her home, a 1580 square foot manufactured home built by Clayton Homes. When asked why she chose the location for her home, Jennifer stated, “After I saw Edgewood, there was no question where I wanted to live.”

She is speaking of “The Community at Edgewood”, Frontiers newest development. The 45-home subdivision made possible by help from partners such as NeighborWorks® America, CFED’s I’m Home, Fannie Mae Foundation and Fannie Mae. “I didn’t think this was possible, but Frontier told me what to do and how to get my loan for the home”. Frontier worked with FAHE, (Federation of Appalachian Housing Enterprises) to obtain her loan. FAHE is a coalition of community-based nonprofit organizations that work together to make housing affordable and available to low-income families. Jennifer gained knowledge of the home buying process by participating in Frontiers “Yes You Can Own a Home” class, an interactive session dedicated to providing information on the buying process as well as what to expect after she moved in. As Frontier Home Loan Specialist Diana Conger states, “ When a person knows the process and feels comfortable, it helps to ease that stressful transition period while the details are being worked out”.

Frontier has been labeled as a national leader in the use of manufactured homes as a viable source of affordable housing and according to the Lyons family, it fits their needs perfectly. “We were in our home pretty fast and I like the thought of actually building wealth in something that is our own.” Although times have changed since the early settlers migrated into this area, why they choose to come has not. As for the Lyons family, their home in the hills has become a reality, today their thoughts are enjoying life, each other, and a swing set in their own back yard.

NeighborWorks® America provided both expendable and capital funding to make the dream come true for the Lyons family. First, funding for down payment and closing cost assistance is targeted to the Community at Edgewood. Second, flexible funding for Frontier allows the organization to hone its skills in manufactured housing and support while it reinvents itself as a national leader in quality manufactured housing.

Story by Cody Prater, for more information, please contact at cprater@frontierhousing.org  or call 606-784-2131.