“My Two Cents” – February 2021

“Another Opening, another Show”.  Lines from a famous musical, it appropriately describes the feeling of excitement and happiness that comes from opening a new housing community.  And all this took place on the day of the worst snow storm to hit our area in quite some time.

Tim Doherty, Executive Director

What I am taking about is our new housing community, “ Freedom Village at Town Center South” in the heart of Robbinsville.  On Feb 1, our staff ushered in 11 new families into their brand new apartments on Ravens Road, all during the worst snow storm to date this year.

Under the leadership of Dara Johnston and Jackie Elsowiny, along with Brianne Foley, Kathy Forcellini, Maria Azcona, the day began 7 am in the new Community Center which had been organized with several tables upon which sat the new tenant files. Prior to that, PFI maintenance staff, Johnny Anaya and Doug Ashey Jr had to snow plow and clear the sidewalks so that everyone could get into the buildings.  Work on that area, continued most of the morning, until finished.

Appointments for lease signing, had been preset prior to Monday, and were scattered throughout the day.  As each family came for their appointments, a PFI staff member would take them to their apartment for their lease signing.  This allowed staff to go over the amenities of the unit– how the heat and a/c work, the stove, etc, as well as review any imperfections that might still exist.  PFI  staff also go into great detail explaining the sections of the lease and house rules, so that everyone can be a good and respectful tenant.

This process can take about an hour with each applicant so there is a lot to do and go over, at this time.  Once all the papers are signed, the tenants receive their apartment keys and their new life at Freedom Village begins. 

I know that there is always great joy felt by the new tenants, when they receive their keys and can begin moving in.  There is also great excitement and joy for our staff, to once again go through this lease up process and know that they are helping someone into one of our brand new apartments. 

On Friday, I met with a Selective Insurance safety engineer who was to do an inspection of our new housing.  As we walked over to the 400 building, she commented to me how impressed she was with our housing but most of all, our staff.  She said that she goes into a lot of establishments and housing facilities, and that PFI staff were the most professional and courteous people she had met.  She said that she always finds our staff so easy to deal with and that they were always willing to help her in any way they can.

That’s what you call great team work, and it certainly was on display Monday Feb 1. Let’s keep it going.