Waitress tipped with new home moves in before holidays

- It's a Christmas wish that came true -- LaNia Stribling now has a place to call home..

"That was my only wish -- getting into a home before Christmas," she said. "I didn't want to wake up in a hotel room."

LaNia got the key to her new home on Detroit's west side Friday.

"I am overwhelmed, and I am grateful and thankful for everybody's support," she said.

That support started at LaNia's job where she works as a waitress.

As FOX 2 first told you earlier this week, a customer LaNia was waiting on was so impressed with her service she promised a big tip.

But when LaNia told the customer she needed that tip money in cash to pay for the $60 per day hotel room she was living in, the customer, who also happens to be a real estate broker, promised to help her find an affordable home.

"It's a 3-bedroom bungalow. It has a upstairs. It has a basement and it has a nice kitchen," LaNia said.

It's a world away from the hotel room LaNia was living in with her mom and son for nearly a year after she got evicted from her apartment when she lost her job and fell behind on rent payments.

But after the chance encounter at the restaurant, the broker was able to relax their credit standards and now LaNia will pay $640 a month versus the almost $2,000 a month she was paying at the hotel.

"It's a very nice house," she said. "It's very reasonable, affordable. And it's a lot cheaper than what I was paying before."

LaNia says she is grateful for all the kindness the community is showing her.

"There are tons of people bringing gifts ... gifts for the house for me, my son and my mom. It's overwhelming. I'm so grateful," she said.

LaNia believes this home is a start to a better future and hopes to one day be able to do for others what so many are doing for her

"Reach out to others that are in this position to help them," she said.


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