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Kimmie’s First-Time Homeownership Story

When you belong to ESL, you are more than a customer, you belong to something bigger. You are our partner. Our partner whose well-being is at the forefront of our minds. We have an unparalleled commitment to delivering a superior customer experience, and we work to live our core values through all we do. We ensure that these values inspire and guide our thoughts and actions so that we can provide you with the financial solutions you need to achieve your goals.

Because you belong to something bigger, achieving your goal is our goal. This is collective action. This is how we build prosperity together. This is how we thrive together. This is how we build a stronger Greater Rochester.

Read on to see this in action.

Kimmie’s Story About Homeownership

The search for a new home often comes with high peaks of excitement and sometimes a test of patience. In a competitive market, some buyers go to great lengths to try to make their offers stand out. Most often patience and preparation are two key criteria for buyers to have on hand. No matter how buyers describe their homebuying journey, it is important to illustrate the differences that make each person’s path unique.

We share some of those unique home purchase stories through the eyes of Kimmie, a single mother who purchased her first home in Webster with guidance from her homebuying team at ESL.

Kimmie’s Story

Kimmie has long called Rochester her home (and ESL her go-to financial institution), having lived from Webster to Spencerport and everywhere in between. In early 2021, she purchased her first home after browsing online listing sites for more than two and a half years.

For Kimmie, the search started on sites like Zillow, browsing new listings in her spare time but falling short of a full-fledged homebuying search. She knew the market was competitive and was content to watch the market and see what happened.

“I started looking a long time ago and just dreaming of when I could have a home. As a single mom, working on commissions, I wasn’t sure when that was going to happen, or if it was going to happen, but I still wanted to look.”

Kimmie, her son, and puppy pose in front of their new family home.

Formulating the Wish List

Being in close proximity to family was important during her home search. With her parents and sister in separate homes in Webster and a brother in the Charlotte neighborhood, she knew she would be looking for a house within a short drive of family.

Living in an apartment during the pandemic with her young son and new puppy further highlighted Kimmie’s desire to move. Working from home, she realized there were limits to what she could change in her apartment, and yearly rent increases further diminished the value of renting. While establishing homeownership was a long-time goal, one of the top priorities was to have a yard that her son and puppy could grow up and play in.

Taking the Leap

When Kimmie received notice her rent would be increasing more than she was expecting, she soon called ESL to speak with a Mortgage Originator to get pre-approved and to understand her mortgage options. The following day, a home popped up on the multiple listing service (MLS) that fit Kimmie’s wish list. She said, “This is super cute, I really like it.”

When speaking with ESL, the Originator Kimmie was working with had previously provided a name of a real estate agent who could assist with showing the property. Kimmie made an appointment to walk through the house and knew it was something she wanted to put a bid on. With a mortgage pre-approval in hand, she worked with her real estate agent to submit a competitive offer and later heard her offer was accepted!

Advice for Homebuyers

One main piece of advice Kimmie points to for other buyers: don’t hesitate to reach out to your Mortgage Originator as soon as you’re thinking of buying. “Don’t sit back and wait and let your fear take over,” she says. Speaking with her Originator was reassuring to let her know she had taken all of the necessary steps to be ready to buy her first home.

Kimmie recalls a very frank conversation with her brother and sister-in-law, who had purchased about a year earlier. They encouraged her to start looking and start getting prepared. In her case, Kimmie had been preparing to buy a house for months. However, the wheels were fully set into to motion after having the conversation with her Mortgage Originator. That was when she was able to discuss how much she could afford, how much money to put down, and still be financially secure. “I knew what my game plan was because I had talked that through with my Originator.”

Congratulations on your new home, Kimmie!

Learn more about how to navigate the home buying process, and what you can expect on the road ahead.

Kimmie’s story is just one example of how, as a customer with ESL, you belong to something bigger. We know homebuying is more than finances, it’s your future. With a Purpose to help our community thrive and prosper, we are committed to assisting first-time homebuyers achieve their dream of homeownership and begin building wealth for themselves and future generations.