A House Is Now Our Home

James and Kimberly Papillion are the first winners of the Black Enterprise Own Your First Home Contest.

that because of how their parents raised them, homeownership was the only choice for them. “We thought about our children,” says James with a smile. “We thought about our younger sisters and brothers and felt that this is not only something for us, but it can be a teaching tool for them and the kids we work with.”

Now it’s up to you to take your first step toward homeownership. If you haven’t purchased a home yet, check in at blackenterprise.com regularly for the launch of the next BE Own Your First Home Contest in 2006.

Nearly 1,000 families and individuals entered our inaugural Own Your First Home Contest. In addition to being a first-time home buyer who met the credit requirements, each entrant was required to write a brief essay about his or her pursuit of homeownership. While only one entrant could win the $10,000 prize toward their down payment, hundreds of others were winners, too. They were inspired by the contest to take action and make their home buying dream a reality. Included among these new homeowners are three entrants contest judges identified as runners-up:

  • Aisha Thomas, a 27-year-old single mother of a 2-year- old son, bought her first home in Pontiac, Michigan, after seven years of renting.
  • Donna Pearman-Davis and her husband, Maurice, both 37, moved into their first home in Matteson, Illinois, with their three teenaged children.
  • Shade Akande, 31, a single, professional woman who also designs wedding gowns and evening wear, bought her first home in Auburn, Georgia.
  • Our runners-up received a $250 gift card from Lowe’s, a BE Wealth-Building Kit, checkbook holder (embossed with the 10 principals of our Declaration of Financial Empowerment), and a two-year subscription to BE. To read the complete stories of these new homeowners, visit blackenterprise.com.
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