Making a House a Home 3

Real estate agent Jessica Northrop creates homes for more than just her clients through Giveback Homes

Sheets of worn metal, branches and thin tarps make up the walls. The floor — dirt. No cabinets, couches or closets are in sight. This is the house where the Sanchezes, a family of seven, lived in Nicaragua.

This is the house Jessica Northrop helped 
to replace.

Northrop, who’s been a realtor in the Denver area for 22 years, embarked on a journey to Nicaragua with Giveback Homes, where she joined a group of 10 other real estate professionals from around the country. Together, they built a new house from the ground up for the Sanchez family.

Last summer, Northrop realized she’d reached a point in her career where she was looking for a way to make her business more socially aware and give back locally and globally. As soon as she heard about Giveback Homes, she knew it was the perfect way to do just that.

Giveback Homes, a nationwide organization, brings together real estate pros like Northrop who want to use their businesses to build better lives for families around the globe. Members — including agents, mortgage brokers, interior designers and more — can contribute financially to, say, help create clean water sources or donate time for build days both locally and abroad.

After joining the charity network last summer, Northrop decided she wanted to go all in with her involvement: “The first thing I wanted to do was actually go with Giveback Homes on a trip to build a home for a family in need,” she said.

That December, she voyaged to Central America to help change the lives of the Sanchez family.

“I feel like there is something honest and real about going all in and really seeing the needs of others in person,” Northrop says.

Seeing the Sanchezes’ flimsy home was an eye-opening experience.

“I found it very rewarding to get my hands dirty, help build the home, and see the happiness it brought to the Sanchez family.  When we left them after three days of building their new home, I saw hope in their eyes.”

Northrop continues to see that look of joy light up in people’s eyes as she continues to support Giveback Homes here in Denver. In fact, she funded another building project here in Denver this June. But it goes beyond building: For every home sold, Northrop contributes a portion of the transaction, making each deal that much more purposeful and meaningful, for her and her clients.

“When I share my involvement with Giveback Homes with my clients, their eyes light up,” she says. “It is special to be part of helping someone buy or sell a home, but it is a real honor to actual help provide a home to someone in need.”