Valdosta family gets new home for free - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Valdosta family gets new home... free

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VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) -

The City of Valdosta is building new homes for two families at no cost to the homeowners.

Their homes were deemed unsafe. So workers tore them down and are almost finished rebuilding them.

"I have my own bathroom," said Vorise Harris, who for the first time won't have to share a bathroom. In just a few weeks she, her two sons, and grandson will move into a new home. "It is beautiful I just love it."

Harris says she's still in disbelief. "It's a dream. I never thought this would happen in my lifetime."

The home that used to sit on this lot was over 100 years old and under 800 square feet. It was deemed unsafe so the city tore it down and rebuilt it for $80,000, all funded through home rehabilitation grants.

"The house had a lot of rotten floors, roof leaking, siding that was going bad, electrical service was definitely going bad in the house," said Richard Joyner, Rehabilitation Construction Coordinator.

And now Harris will have a stable home that can stay in the family for generations to come.

"She deserves everything and more. She worked hard, she never complained. I'm proud to be her son," said son, Eddie Ashley.

"We never complained because that was all we had. Our parents taught us to be content with what you have," said Harris.

And now she has almost 1,200 square feet to share with her boys. And for the first time, a walk in closet. "I have enough room to maybe put a bed in here."

This rebuilding project is all part of the city's goal to eliminate substandard housing by 2020.

Families are chosen for the program based on financial need and condition of their homes.

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