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Palm Beach County family gets new home after hurricane made previous residence unlivable

Posted: 12:25 PM, Jul 26, 2018
Updated: 2018-07-26 21:13:31Z

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. --A single mother whose house was severely damaged by Hurricane Irma got the keys to her new house Thursday.

Jaclyn Ortiz and her three girls moved into their Habitat for Humanity home in West Palm Beach.

Rain from Hurricane Irma caused severe roof damage, making it unlivable. "The roof was basically caving in," Ortiz said. "So it wasn’t safe for us to be there anymore.”

Ortiz says the last few months have been difficult but says the wait was worth it. 

“I mean, we were paying so much in rent, not being able to save, not being able to take a vacation," Ortiz said. "Now we’re going to have an affordable mortgage where we can save.”

Ortiz’s home is the 229th home built by Habitat for Humanity in Palm Beach County. Each Habitat partner family is required to invest a minimum of 400 sweat equity hours of their own labor into the construction of homes before being eligible to purchase their home utilizing a 30-year, no-profit, no-interest loan. 

Ortiz says she is looking forward to saving, taking a vacation and building enough money to buy her daughter her first car.