December 10, 2008
GUATEMALA—During the first year of their marriage, Marco and Ingrid lived in a small rented room in Quetzaltenango. They often lacked running water in their kitchen and bathroom. Being a rented space, they did not have permission to hang family photos or Christmas decorations on the walls of their home, and the noise of neighbors through the thin walls kept them awake many nights. It cost the two Q500 (US$65) per month—the equivalent of a monthly payment for a Habitat house—to rent the one room apartment. When Ingrid became pregnant, the couple was determined to find a solution.
Habitat’s traditional option, a complete home loan, was their option. Ingrid tells us that, “I asked God all the time for the opportunity to own our own home. Thanks to Him, we obtained the support, without which we may have gone another five years in the same conditions.”
After a little over one month of construction, the new house was ready to move in. Just after arriving, Ingrid gave birth to a little boy, Juan Marcos, who they brought from the hospital to their new home. The house had two rooms, and the children would have their own space. More than anything, Marco and Ingrid are grateful to begin their family in a house that is their own; one which has more space and privacy than the small rented room. Ingrid explains her joy with a simple expression that it’s now much easier to keep the house in order, “because everything has a place to be.”
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