Cheatham Habitat for Humanity is gearing up to start its 10th home build on Saturday, Feb. 27 with a host of community support for resident Linda Hambrick, a retiree who has been working two jobs to pay her rent, and who will be purchasing her first home.
“Linda is incredible. She has worked hard all her life and certainly for this opportunity to purchase a Habitat for Humanity home. She needs a fixed housing cost in this season of her life and a place that she can have her three grown children and 13 grandchildren over for family dinners,” says Jeff Bennett, director of divisions, Habitat for Humanity of Greater Nashville. “Linda is like so many residents who are retiring and can’t afford the rising costs of rent.”
A portion of the community funding includes a gift from the Donnie Kemp Memorial Fund from longtime resident Donnie Kemp, who passed away in December of 2020. Donnie was a 1973 graduate of Cheatham County High School and was a well-known and highly respected businessman operating Kemp's Foodland for over 30 years. The Donnie Kemp Memorial Build Day has raised over $7,000 in memorial donations from all over the country in honor of Donnie’s memory. According to Bennett, the funds will be used to purchase construction material for the build.
Future Habitat Homeowner | Linda Hambrick Linda rents a two-bedroom apartment and she says every time she renews her lease the rent goes up. Her rent is so costly that she has had to work two jobs to keep a roof over her head. In early 2020, she retired from Tennessee State University where she worked as a security guard for the last 13 years. Affording her rent and expenses on a fixed income proved to be impossible, so she maintained her part-time security job, but she is ready to “take it easy” in this season of life. In addition to the burdensome rent, she says the breezeways are full of strangers and the apartment complex is very noisy. She feels uncomfortable in her environment with her grandchildren present.
Linda has three grown sons, 13 grandchildren and four great grandchildren. A native of Middle Tennessee, she loves living in Cheatham County and wants to stay close to her family who also live in Cheatham County. A friend recommended that she apply for the Habitat for Humanity homeownership program and she qualified the second time. Her housing cost will decrease from 41 percent of her income to 23 percent in her new Habitat home.
Linda is taking homeownership classes to learn how to budget for a mortgage and how to be a good homeowner. Her children are very excited to help her build her new home with sponsors and volunteers. Linda says excitedly, “The best is yet to come.” To her sponsors she expresses gratitude and says she is so excited about “all of it. I have worked two jobs to pay my high rent. I am so excited to be able to take it easy in my new Habitat home.”
Sponsors for the build include: The David McCullough Memorial Gift, The HCA Healthcare Foundation, A.O. Smith Foundation, Inc., RBS, Inc. Donnie Kemp Memorial Gift, United Way of Greater Nashville, Legends Bank, U.S. Bank Foundation, Walmart #1226, Ashland City Free Will Baptist, Johnny and Paula Melton, Pinnacle Financial Partners, and Gateway Church. Cheatham Habitat for Humanity seeks to put God’s love into action by bringing people together to build homes, communities and hope. Habitat’s award-winning homes are recognized for their quality craftsmanship and energy efficiency, meaning homeowners pay on average $25,000 less for their electric bills over the life of the mortgage. To request an application or to receive more information about the Cheatham Habitat for Humanity, call 615-441-9967 or visit http://www.habitatnashville.org/Cheatham.