“Home is more than just a place that I sleep at night. It's the idea of having permanent roots somewhere and being a part of a community, and the sense of belonging somewhere.”
This holiday season, we’ve been reflecting on how extraordinarily privileged we are to be in the business of “home.” In a year when many people have tragically lost their homes in natural disasters, and countless more are losing grasp of the opportunity to own, create, or sustain a home in the face of widespread inequity and financial hardship, it has never felt more necessary to acknowledge the importance and the meaning of home.
We asked our team to reflect on what home means to each of us. Home is safety, comfort, and security; it is a community, encompassing so much more than the four walls of a building. Home is where our family members create new art, tinker on the piano, and bury themselves in books. Home is where we escape to be our fullest, most authentic, lovable (and occasionally lovably annoying) selves.
“For me, home is the feeling of returning to being. A time or place where there's nowhere else you'd rather be. Home is an arrival.”
“Home is where my heart is full & loved ones are present.”
“The place I feel most able to be myself, always, no matter how messy, silly, sometimes sad, sometimes ecstatic that may be. The result: a deep sense of belonging, and with that, a deeper sense of being connected to everyone and everything around.”
We are grateful to have helped dozens and dozens of educators realize their own vision of home. In the spirit of giving thanks, we wanted to share some thank yous to the teammates, partners, customers, advisors, friends, and family who make up the Landed ecosystem and make this work possible.
This list is far from exhaustive. To everyone who’s played the role of connector, advisor, customer, partner, evangelist, and friend: thank you for joining our mission to help educators across the country achieve the dream of home.
“I am so grateful for our homebuyers, who are thoughtful, giving humans. I'm certain we have the best customers on earth!”
“Our many partners in Santa Cruz – Michael Watkins at the County Office of Education, Kris Munro at Santa Cruz City Schools, Susan True with the Community Foundation Santa Cruz County – have been invaluable in making Landed a success in the community. We're very grateful for their partnership and excited that the progress in Santa Cruz helped plant the seeds for us to now expand to serve the entire Monterey Bay.”
“I am humbled to come to work every day with a team I love – one that is creative, and positive, and passionate.”
“LITERALLY EVERYONE. You all have taken me in and made Landed feel like home.”
“Norma has been so incredibly generous and supportive during my onboarding. I asked the same question MANY times as the context grew richer, and she brought herself to each of those conversations with focus, curiosity, and clarity.”
“I'm grateful for the College Football Playoff Foundation and Bay Area Host Committee, who are helping us extend down payment support and financial wellness opportunities to many more educators throughout the Bay Area. We've also been lucky to work with local groups like Support Teacher Housing, who are striving to build coalitions of people who care deeply about keeping educators in our communities; one of the most impactful events I attended this year was the Peninsula Teacher Town Hall, hosted by Support Teacher Housing and Bay Area Forward, where we were able to hear firsthand from teachers and staff how the housing crisis has impacted their lives and their schools.”
“Eternally grateful for the entire Landed team for officially welcoming me into the fold in my new full-time role! Everyone has been amazing with answering questions and brainstorming ideas to make Landed better and better. It's amazing to work with such dynamic, driven, yet humble individuals.”
“Grateful for my incredible colleagues who have allowed me to try, fail, learn and grow this year. I am better for knowing and working with each of you!”
“I'm extremely grateful to my family and friends who have supported Landed and myself as we have grown over the last year.”
“My husband. As an educator in Oakland Unified School District, he has been a champion for Landed, spreading the word to his colleagues and principals throughout the district, allowing us to serve more educators.”
“Our customers, who work hard every day to support students in their learning. Our agents, for engaging in the work with our customers with positivity and energy. Our participating lenders; thank you for all of your hard work with our homebuyers and our Landed team. My family and friends, who have shown up at Landed events and supported me in my work with Landed.”
“Jennifer Ong, my partner and evergreen supporter.”
“There are WAY too many to list out here, but I'll just point out three in particular: 1) my husband Jonny for humoring me (and oftentimes coaching me through) late-night musings about what could be next for Landed; 2) Jill McLeod, Chris Marks, Jeff Thomas, Allison Snow, Judy Buckmaster, and my mom, Susan Tochterman, for remaining steadfast and committed to helping us launch Landed at my alma mater school district in the Seattle area, Bellevue; and, 3) my friend and co-founder from day one, Jonathan, who has helped shape the way I now view problems and problem solving – he's helped me see even more possibility for good. I'm one lucky fella!”
“Everyone who’s been a part of our ventures into Southern California, especially to incredible champions and pioneers like Dr. Steven Keller and the entire Redondo Beach USD board, Eric DeSobe of Great Public Schools Now, Joe and Suzie Dixon, Monique Daviss of El Sol Academy, Shelley Hoss of the Orange County Community Foundation, and the team at Mission Federal Credit Union.”
“Grateful to my wonderful parents who’ve moonlighted at Landed as tax advisors and social media evangelists.”
“I’m grateful for my teammates at Landed, who have made me feel so close even though I’m usually over 1,000 miles away. Endless thanks to my partner, Matt, and my parents, who have supported me and been unofficial advisors in so many instances. I can’t not thank Tony Lewis, Antonio Parés, Rebecca Kisner, Amy Anderson, Carmelita Galicia-Munoz, Matt Samelson, and Kim Dolan, and the whole Donnell-Kay family for being constant mentors, sounding boards, and friends. I’m grateful to the many organizations in Colorado who work to support educators and to provide equitable housing, including but certainly not limited to Housing Colorado, RAFT Colorado, and Recess for Teachers. Finally, I’m so lucky that I get to work together with educators – thank you all for doing what you do for our communities.”
“The amazing team that teaches and supports me – celebrating the wins and helping to clean up the fails so we can better support more educators!”