“I’m too old to be owning a house,” Reid said, remembering the conversation.
After discussing the offer with her children, Reid contemplated the decision, then eventually accepted the Southside home as her own. Her only request: one of her son’s should be listed as part-owner.
“Just in case something happens to me,” she said.
Baker contacted the attorney who organized the previous house gift. “He did all the paperwork for it,” he said about the pro bono work.
Although Reid was aware of the offer, and had initially declined the gift, she said she was excited and happy to be owning her own home. “She thanked me, I don't know how many times,” Baker said. “She followed me to my vehicle thanking me.”
The two-story home has three bedrooms and one bath, ideal for Reid and another son who lives with her. She has rented the house since 2005.
“Another man owned it when I moved in, then Chad bought it from him.” she said. “So I’ve only had the two landlords.”
Baker may not be Reid’s landlord any longer, but the two still have a close connection. When someone is the recipient of a house, a bond is usually there. “He’s too cool,” Reid said about her former landlord and now friend. “I’ll take this house, but don’t think you’ve gotten rid of me.”
Baker isn’t ready to leave the relationship either.
“I come by and make sure she’s OK,” he said. “I changed her furnace filter a couple of weeks ago.”
As the months have passed, Reid has begun some refurbishing and redecorating of her home with the help of her son and Baker.
Baker is an independent contractor and the owner of C. Baker Remodeling. Some of his responsibilities included owning and repairing his rental properties, until now. Reid’s home was the last rental house in his possession.
Baker remodels houses, often with his father before he passed away three years ago. “He would just always show up, and that’s how we got to know Maggie,” Baker said.
Even without the need to collect rent money or the family partnership, the relationship will continue between Reid and Baker.
“Now, anything I need I’m going to call him,” Reid said.
FROM THE ARCHIVES: Decatur Christmas decorations of the past
Bob and Nellie Blair
Plugging Santa in
Wired for the season
Mixture of themes
Tree trimming time
Christmas in the air
Santa heads for landing
Contact Donnette Beckett at (217) 421-6983. Follow her on Twitter: @donnettebHR
Do you know a person or of a story that exemplifies the best of Decatur? Contact Donnette Beckett at (217) 421-6983 or email@example.com.