Davie County Mom Returns Home to Childhood Property with Help from Clayton and Family Promise

August 13, 2020

The Allen Family cuts the ribbon to their new home

Family Promise Selects Family Who Overcame Homelessness to Receive New Home from Clayton

ADVANCE, NC – August 13, 2020 — Family Promise, an organization that serves families with children who are currently homeless or at risk of experiencing homelessness, and Clayton, a national home builder of site-built and off-site built homes, recently celebrated the donation of a new off-site built home and welcomed a local family to homeownership.

Sonya Allen and her two teenage children, Smitty and Lanie, experienced homelessness after a watermain break forced them to permanently move out of the home they owned. The family spent time in Family Promise of Davie County’s shelter program before moving into transitional housing. Sonya always dreamed of moving back to the land where she grew up in Advance, North Carolina, which she already owns. Now, with the donation of this new Clayton home, Sonya has fulfilled that dream and is once again a homeowner.

The new home is permanently affixed to her property, which will give the family the opportunity for equity building for years to come. Manufactured homes that are permanently attached to land have the potential to appreciate similarly to site-built homes according to the MH index from the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA). The Urban Institute reported 2018 research revealing that manufactured homes appreciate at nearly the same rate as site-built homes according to the national index, 3.4% for manufactured homes and 3.8% for site-built homes.

The home the Allen family stayed in while waiting to move will now be used as transitional housing to help other families working to avoid homelessness.

“At Clayton we are dedicated to helping open doors to a better life through attainable homeownership,” said Susan Brown, Director of Philanthropy at Clayton. “Sonya and her family have overcome obstacles and worked hard to build their future and Clayton is honored to be part of the team providing this family with the dream of homeownership.”

“This home donation isn’t only exciting because this resilient family is getting their forever home, but also because the home they were living in before will turn into transitional housing for more families in our North Carolina community,” said Lisa Foster, Executive Director of Family Promise of Davie County.

The home donation is part of a larger national partnership between Clayton and Family Promise, which works toward ending and preventing family homelessness. Both organizations believe that assisting this family – and others like them– brings the nation closer to one in which every family has a home, a livelihood, and the chance to build a better future. Through the home donation program and A Future Begins at Home, Clayton and Family Promise provide educational outreach and resource development, comprehensive case management, support services, and non-traditional, affordable housing solutions for graduate families, like off-site built housing and transitional housing.

“Since we launched the A Future Begins at Home program, our partnership with Clayton has helped countless families like Sonya’s achieve housing independence through home donations and homelessness prevention efforts,” said Claas Ehlers, Chief Executive Officer of Family Promise National. “We are thankful for Clayton’s ongoing commitment to the fight against family homelessness, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic, which has had a significant impact on America’s low-income families.”

The off-site built home, constructed by Clayton and finished by Clayton Homes of Winston-Salem is an example of the many beautiful off-site built homes (also known as manufactured homes) available for individuals and families seeking quality homeownership. Every off-site Clayton Built® home comes with energy efficient features such as a smart programmable thermostat, energy efficient appliances and furnace to help with long-term utility savings.

This is the first of five home donations through the A Future Begins at Home program this year.

The Allen home features home goods donated by Belk, beds donated by Mattress Firm, and pillows and linens donated by Avocado Green Mattress.



The Allen Family

Sonya Allen and her two children, Smitty and Lanie, both teenagers, first came to Family Promise of Davie County’s shelter program in 2017. The family had been living in a home they owned in Winston-Salem County, NC when a city watermain break left the home unlivable. It was eventually condemned.

During her time at Family Promise, Sonya often spoke of her dream to move back to the land where she grew up in Advance, NC. She owned the property, but the home on the lot was no longer habitable and the cost of building a new home was too great. After graduating from the shelter program, the dream to move to the land in Advance seemed out of reach and the family moved into a transitional home owned by Hope Homes, another local nonprofit.

With the help of Family Promise of Davie County, Sonya started working more hours, took a financial literacy course and worked to grow her savings. Sonya’s family has been stably housed for two and a half years now. The family also volunteers with Family Promise to help other families going through the program that helped them.

Being selected to receive this Clayton home, in partnership with Family Promise National and Family Promise of Davie County, allows Sonya to achieve her dream of returning to the land where she grew up and she will once again be a homeowner. In addition, Hope Homes will be donating the transitional home where Sonya and her children were living to Family Promise of Davie County, where it will be used to empower other families on their journeys to sustainable housing.


Founded in 1956, Clayton is committed to opening doors to a better life and building happyness through homeownership. As a diverse builder committed to quality and durability, Clayton offers traditional site-built homes and off-site built housing – including modular homes, manufactured homes, CrossMod™ homes, tiny homes, college dormitories, military barracks and apartments. All Clayton Built® homes are proudly designed, engineered and assembled in America. In 2019, Clayton built 51,964 homes across the country. Clayton is a Berkshire Hathaway company. For more information, visit claytonhomes.com.


Family Promise envisions a nation in which every family has a home, a livelihood, and the chance to build a better future. What began as a local initiative in Summit, NJ, has become a national movement that involves 200,000 volunteers and served more than 111,000 family members in 2019. Family Promise will change the future for 1 million children by 2030. For more information visit FamilyPromise.org.

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