When Scott and Sheri Martin looked to buy their first home, using Coastal Housing Partnership (CHP) made the difference between being able to buy “something” and buying a house they really wanted, without compromising.
Both Scott and Sheri grew up in Santa Barbara — attending San Marcos High School, Santa Barbara City College, and UCSB — all the while watching real estate prices skyrocket over the years.
“Even for two professionals that were making good salaries in Santa Barbara, it’s still a daunting task to get into a home,” said Scott, a Strategic Business Consultant.
They pondered their options for a couple of years before Sheri, a first grade teacher at Adams School, went on the CHP website (www.coastalhousing.org) to research mortgage lenders.
One of their first calls was to Christine Errea, at Chase Home Finance, a CHP discount provider that offers back 100% of the processing fee, credit report fee and 1/8% of the interest rate on first mortgages.
“The people on the network are fantastic,” said Scott, giving high praise to both Errea and real estate agent Kristiann Wightman, who owns Presidio Properties, another Homebuyers Assistance Program Participating Organization, which offers buyers back 40% of the broker commission.
With the combined discounts from Chase and Presidio, the Martins were able to purchase a three-bedroom, two-bathroom home in Solvang, which includes an unobstructed view of the entire valley from their backyard.
“We were able to find the place we really wanted to get into, and it was made possible. That’s the thing that CHP really did for us,” said Scott. “We didn’t have to make compromises and that’s what we were honestly, very concerned about for a long time.”
In addition to singing the praises of CHP to their colleagues, the Martins also want to let employers know what a great benefit CHP membership is.
Citing the common complaint of high employee turnover in Santa Barbara County, Scott said, “… If it helps them maintain their employee base and deepen their bench, it’s not just good for the homebuyer, it’s good for the employer too.”
Originally published in the Coastal Housing Partnership Newsletter