Lynn has a degree in social work. She had a successful career and home in Boston complete with an on-time mortgage, a car loan that she paid off early, investments and mutual funds. Her ordered life went into a tailspin due to alcohol abuse, and within a few years, she had spent down her assets and defaulted on her financial obligations. When she heard about More Than Wheels she was in a half-way house in Vermont completing her alcohol recovery program. She had a low-paying job at a bookstore to which she traveled by bicycle, even through a cold and inclement Vermont winter.
When Lynn enrolled with More Than Wheels we were able to get her into a Bridge car that allowed her to eventually get better employment. Repairing Lynn’s credit was key to securing her road to financial and health recovery. When she came to us she had no checking account and no savings account -- no relationship with any banking institutions other than the one she described as "looking" for her. One year later, she has rehabilitated her health and financial situation, has purchased a car of her own and has secured employment in her field of social work as a substance abuse counselor.
Ashlie is a young single mom of two children who lives with her parents and extended family. She came to More Than Wheels desperately needing reliable and affordable transportation of her own, since she works three jobs and has frequent medical appointments with her children.
A first time buyer with minimal credit, Ashlie enrolled with More Than Wheels in October, 2008. Ashlie has since graduated from FinFit and saved over $1,000 toward purchasing a new car.
More Than Wheels programs have been instrumental in transforming Ashlie’s financial and family health. Ongoing counseling and FinFit became the catalyst in helping Ashlie break her family’s cycle of generational poverty.
Ashlie’s dream of financial independence was realized this January when she became the proud owner of a new Toyota Yaris and was able to move out of her parents' home and into her own apartment.
Nate is a Native American who was frank with More Than Wheels about his lifelong struggle with alcohol. He had been homeless and trying to get sober when the tent he was living in caught fire and he was seriously burned. His medical bills were staggering. He spoke with us about his readiness to gain financial and health stability so he could move forward with his life.
By the time he enrolled with More Than Wheels, Nate had gotten a job as a busboy at a Friendly’s restaurant, but desperately needed transportation. He started work on his “Steps to Success,” which included financial literacy training and credit repair.
He was placed in a Bridge car and proved to be an excellent student in his Financial Fitness class. By the end of the class, he had been promoted to a higher paying position and was using his Bridge car to attend job-related management training.
With More Than Wheels’s help, Nate’s life transformation has been profound with demonstrated lasting effects. Nate continued to work on his substantial medical debt, and graduated the program into his own new car in October of 2006, about a year after he started. Nate has also stayed sober since he enrolled with More Than Wheels. He became the store manager of the Friendly’s restaurant in North Lebanon, New Hampshire and was recently promoted to a District Manager position.
Tammy’s credit had gone downhill after a long and messy divorce, but she desperately needed transportation. The only place she could buy a car was from a “Buy here, Pay here” place that sold her a 1997 Jeep Cherokee that always seemed to need work. She fell even farther behind on her bills paying for unexpected repairs so she could keep the Jeep on the road.
Tammy was finding herself stranded on the side of the road more and more often and started to miss work. A woman at work suggested the More Than Wheels program.
“Right away everyone at More Than Wheels made me feel good about taking this step—not only to get a reliable, fuel-efficient car I could afford, but to begin to repair my credit. I was able to get a “Bridge” car that was reliable as I went through the program. It saved my job! I felt like it saved my life.”
Today Tammy is driving a new car that allows her to get to work, to drive her son to activities and to go about her life without the stress of poor credit and financial mistakes.
“I feel so empowered—I have the new start I so badly needed!”
Tammy eagerly refers people she knows to More Than Wheels, hoping her success will encourage others to change their lives, too.
Since 2001, More Than Wheels has helped thousands of families finance more than $16 million in loans so they can buy a reliable car and plan for the future.