The Habitat housing program is a helping hand, not a handout. The only thing given away is the opportunity to be a homeowner.
Habitat for Humanity keeps homes affordable by using as much volunteer labor and donated materials as possible. Houses are sold at no interest and no profit to families whose income does not allow them to buy a house through conventional methods, but is sufficient to purchase a no-profit, zero-interest loan Habitat for Humanity house.
The requirements to be considered for a Habitat house include:
- The applicant(s) must be resident(s) of Oconee County for a minimum of one year before he/she/they can submit an application.
- Applicant's current housing must be sub-standard or inadequate for the family size.
- There must be sufficient stable, verifiable household income in order to make monthly payments of principal and to a tax and insurance escrow account as well as maintaining the house. If employed you should be in your current job for a minimum of one year or have a history of steady employment. Applicant(s) do not need to be employed to qualify but need a steady source of income such as Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, Disability Insurance Income or Court ordered child support or alimony.
- If applicant(s) is/are separated and not legally divorced, or if they have a judgement for unpaid debt or have recently gone through bankruptcy - the application cannot be considered.
- Income guidelines used specify that total income be within 35% to 70% of the local area median income.
- Applicants must demonstrate a willingness to partner with Habitat. All families are required to complete 250 hours of sweat equity, the hands-on work of Habitat. Either family or friends can perform a portion of the total hours required. Partnership also means that the approved applicant(s) will pay their mortgage on time, attend programs to learn and practice budgeting, home repair and maintenance.
If you are interested in Habitat and if you believe you might qualify for a home according to the above guidelines you need to request a Habitat for Humanity Family Selection Committee pamphlet Guidelines for Applying for a Habitat House by calling 864-888-2118. Included in the pamphlet is a post card that must be filled out, signed and returned. Those who have returned the post card will be contacted promptly by a volunteer to review and verify basic applicant qualifications. Applicant may then be invited to a meeting where the formal application forms will be executed. The applicant selection process is impartial. Race, ethnic origin, color, religion, marital status, sex and age are not considered and therefore play no part in the decision.
After you complete your application, the Family Selection Committee will review it. The initial assessment will involve a careful review of your income, current debt and credit history. We will confirm employment and other income, verify checking and savings account balances, get statements from your current and previous landlords, obtain a credit report and ask you for credit references.
After passing this initial screening, you will be visited in your current residence by two committee members who will evaluate your current housing situation and verify or collect missing application information. If after the review of this visit you still seem to meet the criteria, there will be a second visit by two different committee members. They will conduct another independent housing evaluation and clarify any final questions.
A final review of your application will be made by the Family Selection Committee and recommendations will be made to the Executive Committee and the Board of Directors for their final review and confirmation.
This process can take four to five months. Please be patient - we will handle your application as quickly as possible. If you have any questions, please call (864) 888-2118 or click here for the application.
Notice: The Federal Equal Credit Opportunity Act prohibits creditors from discriminating against credit applicants on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, age; because all or part of the applicants income derives from any public assistance program; or because the applicant has exercised in good faith any right under the Consumer Trade Commission, Washington, D.C. 30580.