When Jeanette Simmons and Brenda McCarthy talk about living at Pinecrest Apartments, they offer very different perspectives. After all, 82-year-old Simmons has lived at Pinecrest for more than 20 years and is one of only three remaining original tenants, while McCarthy has been there a little over one year. However, one thing they both feel strongly about is that they are big fans of living at Pinecrest.
Simmons said, “Finding a nice home on a lower income has been great. The air conditioner is really important to me because I have bad allergies, and I have to keep it cold so I am able to breathe all the time. Because of this place, I don’t have to make decisions between being able to pay my utilities like air conditioning or getting food.”
McCarthy shared, “I love the security and beauty of the property. I’ve pretty much gotten to know all my neighbors and love being able to walk out of my door and say good morning to them. My daughter has her own room, and my chihuahua loves to just run all over the place.”
Pinecrest is a 36-unit development for the elderly, and originally received more than $55,000 in low income housing tax credits in 1993 from the Alabama Housing Finance Authority to fund part of its creation.
After a recent rehabilitation effort at Pinecrest, Simmons and McCarthy love living at Pinecrest even more. Simmons said, “I live in a handicap apartment, and if I ever get in a wheelchair, I’m able to get in and out now. I got a microwave that’s easier for me to reach, we got nice floors, and the bathtub is a safety tub so I can sit down and shower. They made everything really convenient for me.” McCarthy said, “While the rehab was going on, we had to move around a lot of our stuff and get up early some mornings. It was a little inconvenient, but it was very much worth it for all that we got.”
The rehabilitation at Pinecrest was part of an innovative solution by ARD-Inc., a family-owned housing owner, developer and property management company, to rehabilitate 13 properties in Alabama. The project was featured in the national Novogradac Journal of Tax Credits publication. Click here to read more about the deal and AHFA’s role.
Rodney Corley, with ARD-Inc., is proud of the rehabilitation project, “This was a huge undertaking, but fortunately, we had tenants that were willing to cooperate to make changes that were good for everybody. It was rewarding to see the looks on the faces of the tenants when they walked back in and basically had a new place to live.” Corley is also proud of a garden he helped the residents space out and tilled up on his own time. “I helped them get it built, but the work that goes into keeping it up is on them, and they take care of it. To me, this is what it’s all about. We really want them to feel like a community – a family.”
McCarthy sums it up perfectly, “It has really been a blessing to live here. I truly enjoy it, and I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.”