From PadSplit member to PadSplit host, Jean has gone from paying membership dues to collecting them within two years. Jean, a graduated PadSplit member, grew up in Gwinnett County. He is on a path to secure economic stability for himself and his family while helping others forge their paths. He tells us how PadSplit helped him along the way.
PadSplit: Why did you decide to move back to Atlanta?
Jean: In 2017, I decided to move back to Atlanta from Oakland. What I wanted to get done wasn't happening there. Don't get me wrong; I was having fun… a lot of fun! But joy is only one part of life, and I wasn't headed in the right direction. For me to have the experience I wanted to have in 5, 10, or 20 years, I knew I had to make some changes, including leaving my friends and this fantastic city behind.
As soon as I got back to Atlanta, I had humbling experiences that showed me how I was so far away from this future version of myself. At 29, with no job and no transportation, I had to move back in with my mom and borrow her car to get to places.
PadSplit: What helped you get back on track?
Jean: Two things help me get back on the right track—my professional experience of over five years... and luck. In early 2018, I landed a job at PadSplit. It was an excellent opportunity to change the world by providing clean, safe, affordable housing. And since I was employee number one, it was cool to be a part of a growing company.
Once I was employed, it was time for me to start working on myself. Self-responsibility is a big part of my self-esteem, so I moved out of my mom's house and moved into a PadSplit. It was a great experience living in a PadSplit. The members I lived with were all chill, down to earth, and hardworking people who were, just like me, determined to do better for themselves. The house was a short walk from a train station which made it easy to get to and from work. While living in a PadSplit, I was able to pay off credit card debts, medical bills, and pay down my student loans.
PadSplit: That's inspiring! What happened next?
Jean: Eventually, I saved up enough money to put a down payment on a car.
Then, in 2019, I did something that surprised even me. After saving some more money, I was able to put a down payment on a house!
Now, I have a four-bedroom, two-bathroom house 15 minutes away from the city. The best part about owning this home is turning it into a PadSplit. I can cover the cost of owning a home and provide clean, safe, affordable housing to others who started just like I did. PadSplit is an opportunity for me to build personal wealth.
PadSplit: Wow! How has it been going from a PadSplit member to a PadSplit host?
Jean: Right now, having people living in my house is very helpful. It's an extra check each month. I'm using that money to pay down the mortgage, my student loans, and car note.
PadSplit: It seems like you have a clear vision for yourself. Have you always been this way? What kept you focused?
Jean: The focus for me comes from having long-term goals. I knew that I wouldn't be able to do some of the things that I wanted to accomplish in the next week or the next few months. And I'll be honest with you. I didn't think that I'd be able to get into a house within, you know, two to three years. So the focus came from having those longer-term goals, knowing that I wasn't going to be able to do this, you know, overnight. And that was pretty much it- just keeping my eyes on those goals.
PadSplit: That is cool. It feels like you've won. What's next for you?
Jean: Before I can feel like I'm starting to win, I want to reduce the amount of debt that I have on things like student loans and my car note. I'll get more comfortable as I feel freer having paid those things down. After that, I would like to buy another house so I can continue investing in real estate to improve my financial position and socioeconomic status.
PadSplit: That’s amazing! Thank you for chatting with us today.
Jean: Thank you!
Jean’s story is one we hear a lot at PadSplit. Many members see PadSplit as a way for them to gain control in other areas of their lives. With flexible, affordable, safe housing, they can focus on building their bank accounts — and pursuing their dreams.
Interested in learning more about becoming a PadSplit member? Apply here.