Honest & Committed
Home ownership means a great deal to me. It’s been 40 years since my family immigrated to Canada. We were the ethnic Chinese (Hoa) purged from Vietnam. We left in the middle of the night. We found a boat that took us & 200 others packed like sardines, to Hong Kong. There we lived in a camp for 11 months then sponsored to Canada. We arrived in December 1979. I was 7 years old.
I’m forever grateful to my parents for the risk they took. They said they didn’t have much of a choice. It was a small window the Vietnamese government gave us to get out so they did. My parents worked hard doing manual labour jobs & two jobs for my mom for many years. After renting a few places around Toronto, they saved enough to afford to buy their own home. They were so happy & proud when they got their house keys. Canada gave them what they’ve been missing – peace, security & a sense of belonging.
That memory stayed with me. With help from my in-laws, my husband & I bought our first home. We were happy to stop paying rent & to start building equity. We both worked as freelancers in the film & television industry. Our income changed each year. Still we managed to pay down the mortgage. After two years of marriage, we felt we were ready to become parents. Unfortunately for us, this didn’t come easily. We tried for two years to have kids. At one point, I was told I would never get pregnant. I was completely devastated. I couldn’t believe that was my destiny but I wouldn’t give up.
As we were going through this, the reality of our starter home set in. Through research I met a TCM doctor who gave me hope. Then our dream home came on the market & we got our house! Later that week I found out I was pregnant! I couldn’t believe it. What I learned is, as hard as things may seem at times, to believe in myself, do the work & keep going. My tenacity served me working in the film & television industry before & since, in real estate. I’ve been back to Vietnam twice. It’s where I came from but Toronto is where I belong. Home ownership means a great deal to me. More than building wealth, it’s where we build memories with our kids, friends & families who visit. My goal is to help other families achieve the same.