LandCastle House offers new beginnings for families in transitionMortgagePress.comLandCastle House, LandCastle Title, Fulton County, Georgia, Olivia Payne, Morris Hardwick Schneider, Ahmen Housing Corporation
A partnership between the LandCastle Foundation and the Ahmen
Housing Corporation to create LandCastle House in Roswell has
brought new hope to at-risk families in north Fulton County.
Called "A Place for New Beginnings," LandCastle House is a
triplex home that shelters families who are transitioning from a
time of trouble to a life of promise. Community leaders will gather
for a dedication ceremony of the new facility on July 9.
"Our goal with LandCastle House is to make a difference one life
at a time," said Olivia E. Payne, executive director for the
LandCastle Foundation, the charitable arm of LandCastle Title and
the real estate closing law firm Morris Hardwick Schneider (MHS).
"We created this facility after meeting with many local and state
non-profit organizations to discover how LandCastle Foundation
could best help our community. We learned that there is a real need
in north Fulton County to help families in transition."
Payne met with officials at Ahmen Housing Corporation, which
owns the triplex, and arranged for the LandCastle Foundation to
adopt the project. Staff members from LandCastle Title and
Morris|Hardwick|Schneider (M|H|S) worked to renovate the house.
Volunteers stripped wallpaper, painted walls, replaced carpeting
and tile and landscaped the yard. Local firms, including Solid
Source Real Estate and Atlanta West Carpets, donated floor
coverings, and friends from, U.S. Financial Services, a firm
client, helped with the labor. LandCastle Title and M|H|S
volunteers solicited food donations to stock the pantries. All
told, more than 60 staff from the firm's 37 Atlanta offices came
together to work on the project.
"We want LandCastle House to be a place where a family could be
proud to live," Payne said. "We want it to be a place for new
beginnings. That's why participants in the program will work toward
self-sufficiency during their stay."
Families moving into LandCastle House must meet several
criteria. They must be drug-free, have no recent criminal activity
and have an income of less than 60 percent of the median. Payne
said the foundation is looking for families who are in transition
due to a crisis in their lives. Families will pay rent of no more
than 30 percent of their net income.
In addition to a providing place to live, LandCastle House will
also provide mentors from MHS and LandCastle Title to residents
work toward self-sufficiency within 12--18 months of moving in.
Families will receive instructions on budgeting, car maintenance,
health care and family issues. Mentors will meet monthly with the
families during their stay and continue for six months after the
families have moved out to ensure they remain on a healthy
"LandCastle House is a unique program in this community," said
Payne. "While there are shelters for the homeless and programs such
as Home Stretch in place for when you leave a shelter, there is no
transition between that and self-sufficiency. Some people find that
step too difficult and fall back instead of moving forward. Plus,
affordable housing in Fulton County is at a premium. There is a
two-year waiting list for Section 8 housing."
Currently, two families have moved into the triplex. One is a
single mother, with a 12-month-old child, who works as a dental
"She came to us two months ago. She has a good job, and is
determined to turn her life around," said Payne. "The office where
she works is closed on Fridays, so she began looking for other work
on Fridays. This is the kind of person who can really benefit from
the services we can provide."
Once the renovations were complete, Payne said the look on the
young mothers face was worth all the effort.
"I never wanted to come home before, I always wanted to be other
places," said the LandCastle House resident. "Now if someone wants
to see me, they'll have to come to my house."
"I'm very proud of the LandCastle Foundation and the positive
impact it has on the community through programs such as LandCastle
House," said Nat Hardwick, LandCastle Title CEO and chairman and
MHS managing partner. "Making a difference in peoples lives is by
far the most important accomplishment our company can achieve."
For more information, e-mail [email protected]
For more information, visit www.closingsource.net.