Socorro man tackling homelessness issue in a tiny way

SOCORRO, N.M. (KRQE) – One New Mexico man is tackling the issue of homelessness in his community in a tiny way.

“Our regulations make it illegal to have a transient community. I need to figure out a way to change that,” said Jim Burleson.

His solution to that major problem is rather small.

“I’m building a tiny home and I’m hoping we can end homelessness in Socorro. We got 6 chronically homeless people in Socorro and I think if I can build one house every couple of months, I can put an end to it,” he said.

The idea of the project touched Jason Frame. He once went through some hard times, so now he’s using his free time to help his friend, Burleson.

“I can see the need for somebody to not have to worry about where they’re going to go home to,” said Frame.

This home, and homes to come, will provide free shelter for those who need it. When it comes time to move on, they should be able to easily snag a new home or apartment. That’s because tenants will sign a lease.

“Which will give them a rental history, a positive rental history. So, in ten years, in five years, in two years, they’re back on their feet and they want to do something bigger, they now have a rental history they can take into an apartment complex,” said Burleson.

He partnered with the Socorro Compliance Office to make that happen, but when it comes to funding all of this, it’s money out of his own pocket.

Even though it’s a tiny space, Burleson says it’s enough to change someone’s life.

The first tiny home will be done in a few weeks and he plans on making five more within the next two years.