Supporting members make The Incline possible, so we wanted to put them in the spotlight with this series.
Meet Candice Achenbach, a transplant Mt. Oliver resident with a passion for housing restoration, tea, and affordable housing for all.
Where in town might people run into you?
Phipps, The Symphony, Miller Ace Hardware, and places that serve tea (Dobra Tea, Big Dog, Adda Coffee and Tea House, The Abbey, and Black Forge in Allentown).
What’s something you’re working on — in big ways or small — that you could use help with?
The idea for Susschen House began when I realized that I could no longer afford to live in the San Francisco Bay Area. I wanted the next place I lived to be affordable, and I also wanted to use the power and privilege I had to create affordable, safe, and reliable housing for others.
I choose Pittsburgh for a variety of reasons including its affordability, history and the fact that it is an up-and-coming city which means that affordable housing is becoming an issue for the residents with the fewest resources.
I was delighted to find Susschen House just above the main street in the borough of Mt. Oliver. The original house had been divided into four spacious apartments. It sits on almost a quarter of an acre and contains three, one-bedroom apartments and one, two-bedroom apartment with a partially finished attic space. Although all of the apartments were occupied, they were in very poor condition.
I’ve spent the last year making three of the four units livable again and will soon be making improvements to the last one.
I’ve connected with several organizations within the Pittsburgh area which assist individuals with the transition into independent living and am looking forward to renting to their clients.
As I head into 2020, I’m looking at a much bigger projects which include planning and hopefully beginning true restoration of the property, including replacing the roof.
These are both extremely important undertakings as they speak to the core passions that have driven this adventure: The conviction that all houses deserve to be loved and cherished and that all humans deserve high quality, safe, affordable housing.
I never say no to help of any kind, though the help I cherish most is on the more tangible side of the spectrum.
What made you decide to become a member of The Incline?
This month was a gift and hopefully by the time my free membership runs out next month I’ll be able to afford to continue as a regular member because I like supporting the organizations that I believe are doing good work in the community. (Editor’s note: Thanks Candice, we appreciate you!)
What local business do you think deserves a shoutout (and why)?
Inhabit Realty, Dani is a wealth of information and resources!
What’s a local event you went to recently that you loved?
“The Woman in Black” at PICT Theatre.
What’s a recent story you’ve read about Pittsburgh that you wish more people cared about (and why)?
While this wasn’t in Pittsburgh, I wish people paid more attention to stories such as this one. A hospital found out that providing housing and basic social services for patients experiencing homelessness was cheaper and had better health outcomes than repeatedly treating them in the ER.
What are you celebrating in your life right now
The amazing families that I nanny for and making it through the first year of homeownership and landlordship.
Supporting members like Candice make our work possible — and they get special perks like event discounts, ticket giveaways, and bonus content in the newsletter. Become an Incline member today to join the crew. And P.S. right now is an extra special time to join — here’s why.