New apartment complex gives families in need a home

Complex offers fresh start to families

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ORLANDO, Fla. – A new apartment complex is offering kitchens fit for entertaining, large bedrooms and views overlooking a peaceful water fountain to families who might have had nowhere to stay just months ago.

The new 70-unit apartment complex in Winter Park, Goldenrod Pointe, is part of an affordable housing initiative in conjunction with Orange County. Families pay lower rents, but this one takes it a step further, setting aside 20 percent of the spaces for those who are homeless.

"They don't have the money to put up deposits, first month's rent and that kind of thing," developer William Culp said.

Caseworkers help place struggling families or chronic homeless people in the units, cutting rent prices in half, and in some cases making rent free for a time. Then programs get the families back to work and eventually back into regular communities.

Officials said this is a growing need for Orange County, which consistently has had thousands of homeless people at any given time.

"The focus for us is the transition. We don't focus on how many people come in, we focus on how many people move through this community successfully," Culp said.

The units are already filled and there is a waiting list that extends into next year.