You don't need money. All you need is vision, courage, and determination. My two older kids were born in my first home. When I paid $25k for it, it was the last 'white' house on a block between the projects and North Philly. My friends were appalled when they picked me up. Now it's on a $200k plus block, and many yuppies and their kiddies are all around. Alot has changed in the 19 years since I bought that house, and my optimism has been justified. While the neighborhood school is still weak, the handwriting is on the wall. The adjacent grammar school is considered to be highly desirable, and there are charter choices now that didn't exist when I bought that house.
You don't need to pay through the nose for "certainty". You can live cheap and well if you're smart about it.