Who qualifies for a Habitat house?
In general, families who are unable to meet the income and credit history requirements of banks often qualify for a Habitat house. We also have specific upper income guidelines.
Habitat takes into consideration problems with current housing (e.g. over-crowding, rent too high, bad structural problems, infestations, etc.); your willingness to work (500 hours of sweat equity on your own home, on committees, someone else’s home, etc.). Families are encouraged to have friends and relatives assist them with a certain number of these hours. Your employment history, credit history, and ability to make the monthly mortgage payment will also be considered.
How much does a Habitat house cost?
Payments vary depending on the house. For example, a house built for $70,000.00 (which is typical) would have a monthly payment of approximately $500.00 which includes principal and escrow for taxes and insurance. The houses are sold with mortgages usually for a 20-year pay period. Payments will not exceed 30% of the family’s income. Families and sites are matched by Habitat’s Family Nurturing Committee. A down payment of $500.00 and a full year of home insurance payments are required.
If I qualify, how long does the process take?
It may take up to six months for the screening process and up to 2 years before the family to move into a Habitat house.
What is my responsibility to Habitat?
Selected families are required to attend a minimum of new-homeowner classes. These classes include budgeting, home maintenance and minor repairs, insurance, and other topics related to family living and home ownership. After moving in, families are expected to make monthly mortgage payments on time and keep the house and yard well-maintained. Homeowners are totally responsible for their property and monthly utility bills.
What else should I know?
HFH raises much of its funds through publicity throughout the community. Thus, homeowners will occasionally be asked to participate in events that will help publicize the work of HFH. Such events might include fund-raisers, newspaper, radio or TV coverage, and photographs. This is necessary to maintain community involvement, but every effort is made to make the experience comfortable for the family.
Each home is publicly dedicated and the family is presented a Bible along with the keys to their house. For each HFH home built, your local affiliate supplies funds to build a corresponding home in another country. Owning a home is a tremendous responsibility. HFH will provide training and teach you the skills that will become necessary for you to have.
When are applications available?
Applications are available anytime! Call Elizabeth Biggane, a member of the Habitat board for more information at 937-725-8071. She will assist you with the application and guide you through the process.
Also, the Family Selection Committee conducts an annual workshop to assist potential partner-families in completing applications for housing. This is usually held near the middle of July in the Fellowship hall of the Presbyterian Church, 840 Timber Glen, Wilmington, OH. Applications are only available at the workshop. At the present time all available building lots have been matched to families. We are constantly looking for and acquiring additional lots. Watch the newspapers the week right after the Clinton County Fair for the date of the next workshop.