Born and raised in Cheyenne, Brandon always thought of Denver as the cool place to visit for arts and culture. He was thrilled to become a Denver resident five years ago, yet has struggled to find stable housing here. In fact, Brandon has moved seven times in the past five years!
Brandon works as a science teacher at a charter school in Commerce City. He loves what he does and finds teaching to be especially rewarding.
“I feel like I’m making a difference,” Brandon reflects. “The best thing is when students ask me for a letter of recommendation for college. A lot of my students are first-generation college students. To help them get into college is a great thing… very rewarding.”
Brandon originally thought that he was going to be a scientist after getting his PhD in chemistry. After trying out some jobs in a lab he realized that wasn’t the right career path for him. Instead, he felt like teaching was a way to “pay it forward” to future generations. As much as he loves his job, it’s been a challenge finding decent housing on a teacher’s salary in Denver.
“A teacher’s salary prevents me from purchasing a home on the open market, and limits even where I can rent because of the high cost of living in Denver,” Brandon shares
He’s currently renting a room in a house that he shares with three other people. He has his own bedroom and bathroom, but shares all other living spaces with the other residents. It can get tricky to find open times in the kitchen to make his own meals, and the shared spaces were especially tough this past year when he was forced to work from home because of the pandemic.
Brandon can’t wait to become a homeowner this year and have more space to live and plan for the future.
“Homeownership will give me stability and the ability to focus on other aspirations,” Brandon said. “I won’t have to spend so much time thinking about rent rising or having to move again. It will be a new experience and something I’m really excited about.”
Brandon is also excited to be living in the Elyria-Swansea neighborhood, where he’ll have a mere 9-minute commute to his school.
“I really thought homeownership was going to be a long shot and am so grateful for this opportunity. It’s amazing!”