Do you and your family dream of owning a safe, decent, and affordable home? Are traditional mortgage requirements or a down payment on a house preventing you from making this dream a reality?
Habitat for Humanity Sault Ste. Marie & Area is accepting applications from low-income, working families interested in owning a Habitat Home with a geared-to-income mortgage and 500 hours of volunteer service in lieu of a down payment.
Habitat is currently building a semi-detached home for two families on Wellington St. W., but due to unforeseen circumstances, there is now availability for one of the two homes.
As such, Habitat is looking to onboard a new family interested in living in the modest two-storey, three-bedroom home on Wellington St. W., which is expected to be completed by the end of October. With gratitude to the generous sponsorship of Ontario Aboriginal Housing Services and partnership with several newcomer organizations, Habitat encourages Indigenous and newcomer families, as well as other groups facing barriers to homeownership, to submit an application for this and future Habitat Homes.
“We are hoping to fill this three-bedroom home on Wellington Street West and begin building our homeowner application bank for our upcoming builds on Goulais Avenue and Blake Street. One of the most common things we hear from successful applicants is that they applied on a whim, or that it took some serious convincing from a family member or loved one to apply. We encourage everyone who is interested in our Affordable Homeownership Program and who meets the criteria to apply. It could change your life,” stated Allyson Schmidt, Vice-Chair of Habitat’s Board of Directors and Chair of the Family Services Committee.
To qualify, eligible homeowners must be:
- In need of better housing. Potential homebuyers might be dealing with poorly maintained, unhealthy, or overcrowded housing; unaffordable rent; inaccessible housing for people living with disabilities; or have other shelter needs.
- Willing to partner with HabitatHabitat. Homeowners volunteer a minimum of 500 hours with Habitat including volunteer hours spent building their own home or at a Habitat ReStore. This also includes classes in personal finances, home maintenance, and other homeowner topics.
- Able to make affordable mortgage payments. Habitat homeowners buy their home for the fair market value. Mortgage payments are made affordable because they do not exceed 30 percent of the gross household income, and income is evaluated on a yearly basis.
“Our Program really does help local families escape the cycle of poverty and build brighter, happier, and more successful futures. Habitat Families often experience improved health and wellbeing after moving into their new home. Parents have better employment outcomes, kids are more confident and perform better in school, and family life often improves. These families are better off – financially, physically, and psychologically – for generations to come,” stated Chelsey Foucher, Fundraising & Marketing Coordinator.