Francis accepts the key their new home from Marijn Smit. Photographer John Schmidt.Over the years, Transamerica employees nationwide have volunteered their time, energy, and spirit to help families build houses with Habitat for Humanity. Last year, for the first time ever, Transamerica sponsored a full house build in Denver from start to finish, making the home a little more affordable for the family of Francis and Schola.
More than 100 employees rolled up their sleeves to help build the dream.
To be clear, Habit for Humanity provides a leg up, not a handout. Francis and Schola (Habitat policy is to refer to the new owners only by their first names) are buying the home with a no-interest loan attached to an affordable, 30-year mortgage. The couple also devoted 200 hours in “sweat equity” on their home and the homes of other Habitat families.
The new home is a big improvement from their former living arrangement — a cramped two-bedroom apartment shared by six family members. When the family arrived to see the newly completed house for the first time, they were overwhelmed with emotion.
“We are so excited to have a big backyard for our kids to go play,” Francis said.
Projects like this remind us just how much wealth and health are correlated.
“There’s really three things that people need to live long and to live well,” said Marijn Smit, head of asset management at Transamerica.
The first, he said, is to be socially engaged, which a setting like this helps with. The second is to adopt healthy habits, so you need a healthy living environment. Lastly, it’s about building financial security. Home ownership plays a huge role there.
Francis and Schola, thank you for letting us be a part of your home build. We at Transamerica wish you the best in wealth and health.