Froylan Ochea and Angelica Godinez live in a trailer in downtown Shelton with their two children, 5-year-old Jareilly and 1-year-old Citally.
“It’s crazy,” said Godinez. “It gets crowded. The manager is not that nice either.”
But in about six months, the family will move into a new three-bedroom house in the Angelside neighborhood through their partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Mason County.
“We’re excited, happy we’re getting a bigger place, our own place, which is more important,” said Godinez, who has lived in Shelton for seven years.
On Monday, Habitat hosted a groundbreaking ceremony for the house on Grandview Avenue, although the site had already been dug for a basement for a two-car garage. Residences in the neighborhood are required to be able to accommodate two vehicles off the street.
The two-story house, scheduled to be completed in six months, will sport three bedrooms and two bathrooms. This is the organization’s 27th house.
Tumwater resident James Spencer is the group’s construction supervisor. He’s worked in construction for 30 years.
"The most rewarding part is “when I see the families that get the house,” he said. “It’s not like we’re building these houses to sell, or the customer doesn’t know what goes into it.”
Each Habitat applicant is required to perform at least 400 hours of “sweat equity” in the building of the house.
The group recently completed a house on Washington Street in the Mountain View neighborhood. Volunteers are currently remodeling a house in the Shorecrest neighborhood, said executive director Marty Crow.
This the 18th Habitat house for Henry Biernacki, the construction committee chairman. Before joining Habitat, the retired Boeing employee served on seven missions to South Africa, where he built churches and dormitory rooms for teachers at a private school.
“We can use construction volunteers, especially in the wintertime to get the roof on so we can work inside,” he said. “The weather will hinder us if we don’t get the roof on early.”
The group is always seeking volunteers, including retired contractors and carpenters, “people who are a little skilled,” Spencer said.
Sierra Pacific Industries donated five units of lumber, enough to build two houses, the group announced.