Housing Helps assistance aids Breckenridge business owner with buying a home, planting roots in community

Sarah Olson and Andy Waugh stand outside of their new residence on the early morning of Friday, July 15, 2022. The Olsons procured their property with the support of Summit County govt program Housing Helps, which incentivizes locals to invest in homes with an extra deed restriction paid for by the county up to 15{3e92bdb61ecc35f2999ee2a63f1e687c788772421b16b0136989bbb6b4e89b73} of the property’s industry benefit.
Tripp Fay/For the Summit Each day Information

Sarah Olson has lived in the county for 8 decades. For a lot of of people several years, in her intellect, there was in no way a risk that she could ever acquire a property in Summit County. 

This spring, she was established erroneous. Now, bins scatter the Dillon Valley condo she acquired with her spouse, Andy Waugh, in May possibly.

“Should we just leave?”

Olson and Waugh moved away from Wisconsin in 2014 with hopes of a superior daily life in the Colorado mountains. When they acquired here, nonetheless, their dwelling predicament was so bad, Olson mentioned, that she and Waugh would have a dialogue, on a weekly basis, about regardless of whether or not they must depart the county. 



For 6.5 decades, they lived in a two-bed room condominium in Dillon Valley that Olson said had “not been truly cared for” in what appeared like two a long time. 

“We had been the 3rd sublease in our condominium, so almost everything was just type of appeared about,” she reported. “Every time another human being would shift in, almost nothing obtained repaired. We experienced boiler problems each week, it felt like we experienced no h2o. A person winter season, we didn’t have scorching h2o for nearly 45 times.” 



Their carpet was nearly 20 years aged and their partitions experienced turned yellow from the prior owners’ yrs of cigarette smoke. Olson stated they frequently bleached their partitions to maintain the yellow stains from seeping via the paint. 

“It was exhausting,” she claimed. “Every time we obtained an opportunity, we were like, ‘Should we just go away? Should really we just go?’ — mainly because we had been just so annoyed and so exhausted of not getting greater for the amount of funds that we ended up having to pay.” 

Then, the COVID-19 pandemic strike. Through that time, Olson gathered money, organized and opened a small business — Piper Gretchen Nails in Breckenridge — in just 6 months. 

“That, honestly, is 1 of the factors that stored us in this article. If my enterprise hadn’t taken off, we may possibly not have stayed,” Olson mentioned.

Housing Can help

That is when they started a dialogue with real estate agent Sara Gambino, a broker at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Colorado Authentic Estate, about wanting for a property. Only a handful of months afterwards, in the drop of 2021, Olson claimed she bought a contact from Gambino about a housing system referred to as Housing Can help. 

Housing Can help is a Breckenridge and Summit County govt application for area purchasers who work 30 hrs a week in Summit County. The county launched the system in 2019 to deliver far more housing stock for the nearby workforce. 

Here’s how it is effective: A purchaser puts in an software to Housing Will help, and at the time they are permitted they start out a housing search. Summit County Housing Director Jason Dietz stated any regional who qualifies can utilize if they’re on the lookout to buy a household.

When a buyer’s supply is approved, the county gives up to 15{3e92bdb61ecc35f2999ee2a63f1e687c788772421b16b0136989bbb6b4e89b73} of the home’s marketplace value again to the owner to use at their individual discretion as an incentive to incorporate a deed restriction to their house. 

“We’re not getting the property, for each se. (The county) is just acquiring the deed limitations that restrictions the use of that home to need it to be occupied by a member of the local workforce, not be short-time period rented,” mentioned Dietz.

He additional that Housing Helps is a excellent option for people today who make way too considerably money to qualify for a deed-restricted neighborhood but not sufficient funds to invest in a single of Summit County’s million-dollar homes. Deed-restricted neighborhoods can also be really competitive.

“I’ve observed it be handy for people today, for locals. I’ve observed it, you know, be the change in between them obtaining a residence and not getting a house,” said Gambino. 

Olson and Waugh were being Gambino’s 2nd consumers to attempt Housing Assists, and for them, the plan was thriving. 

The two experienced a conference with a loan provider in Oct 2021 and were being “given homework” to put together for the order. Throughout the winter season, Olson stated they labored to improve their credit scores and shell out off personal debt.

By the time April came all around, they were all set to purchase. 

A “really clean process”

On April 26, the loan company told them to get in touch with Gambino for a housing search.

Not anticipating much, Olson attained out suitable before she and Waugh were being about to leave for holiday vacation.

“While we were gone, a device became available. It was actually like there was no conversation,” she stated. “As soon as we got back again into condition, we went and saw it and wrote an present correct away.” 

They didn’t get their first offer you, but it did not get considerably for a longer period for the pair to find results. 

Just two days afterwards, Olson and Waugh applied to a distinctive rental, 1 Olson stated they liked even greater. That night, their provide was accepted. 

From the time they started off their research on April 26, it took only nine days for them to be under contract. By May 5 it was formal. They shut and had been handed the keys to their new home on June 2 and are continue to unpacking boxes. 

“I don’t imagine I have thoroughly wrapped my head all around it yet,” Olson reported. “I really don’t know if my husband’s thoroughly wrapped his head close to it nonetheless. It is so nuts. We in no way imagined we would individual residence or a home in Summit County. It just looks so unattainable.” 

Olson and Waugh did have to set a home finance loan on their condominium, but Olson stated it has saved them funds, up to $350 for each month.

Their new house was $416,000, and they put their 15{3e92bdb61ecc35f2999ee2a63f1e687c788772421b16b0136989bbb6b4e89b73} from Housing Helps toward the down payment. The revenue went straight from the county to the title firm.

“It was a truly sleek process,” Olson said. 

At their prior condominium, Olson and Waugh compensated $2,000 a month. If they experienced resigned the lease on July 9, the lease would have long gone up to $2,250 due to the fact of a modern remodel at the sophisticated. 

Olson explained the advanced had done a kitchen area and a tub rework. Though the transform was nice, she said, it didn’t take care of a great deal of the problems they experienced though living there.

A house of their very own

Their latest residence is a freshly remodeled just one-bed room, just one-rest room condominium in Dillon Valley, and Olson additional that only a couple of repairs have been essential when they moved in.

“You could have walked in the door and place down roots straight away,” she reported. Her beloved aspect is the west-going through patio that faces the Tenmile and Gore ranges. 

Following 8 years of residing in the county, Olson explained she’s lastly ready to unwind. 

“It’s been genuinely, genuinely awesome to be in a position to move in right here and know that this is our dwelling,” Olson said. “We’re being, and nobody can notify us that we have to depart.”

Maria Flores

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