What does Habitat for Humanity do?
Habitat for Humanity builds simple, affordable homes with and for families, couples and individuals in need of housing.
How can I get involved?
Habitat is funded entirely by donations and staffed largely with volunteers. We are always in need of individuals willing to pitch in to help a neighbor in need. Visit our How You Can Help section to find out ways to donate or volunteer.
Are Habitat houses free?
No. Habitat homeowners purchase their homes through a USDA Direct Loan at up to 5.5% interest.
How are Blue Spruce Habitat for Humanity’s homes priced? Blue Spruce Habitat for Humanity obtains an independent appraisal from a licensed real estate appraiser. The home price is the appraised value.
How are the mortgages set? The first mortgage amount is based on what the homeowner can afford at 30% or less of their gross monthly income. The first mortgage will never exceed the appraised value. The lender determines what the monthly payment will be. Blue Spruce Habitat ensures that the monthly payment is 30% or less of the homeowners’ gross monthly income.
What if the first mortgage is less than the appraised value? Blue Spruce Habitat for Humanity will put in place a second mortgage to prevent the homeowner from flipping the house.
Where do homeowner’s make their mortgage payment to? Habitat homeowner’s make their mortgage payments to their lender.
What are the terms of a Habitat homeowner’s mortgage? Habitat homeowner’s term of their mortgage are determined by the lender based on their qualifications.
What happens to the money from the homeowner’s mortgage? First, It is used to pay-off any construction loans on the property. If there is money left after any construction loans are paid, the money is used to further the mission of Habitat, i.e. build more homes.
Do grants or donations lower the amount of the mortgage? Grants and donations help us to build the home. With a limited number of exceptions, a grant or donation does not lower the mortgage amount as the mortgage amount is set at what the homeowner can afford. In addition, certain grants require that the home stay affordable over a number of years. Homeowners may be required to sign a beneficiary use covenant requiring an affordability period for the home.
What is the purpose of sweat equity?
“Sweat Equity” refers to actual hands-on physical involvement of partner families. Sweat Equity represents one of the most vital elements of the Habitat for Humanity ministry and functions as the connection between the homeowner and the ministry. Sweat Equity serves as a mechanism for volunteers and homeowners to develop relationships.The practice of Sweat Equity performed by Habitat homeowners has three main goals: Partnership, Pride in Homeownership, and Development of Knowledge and Skills.
Sweat Equity hours in no way take the part of any of the down payment or monetary contribution toward the home or the affiliate. The contribution of sweat equity by the family shall be without payment of any wages or fiscal reimbursement, even if the family, for whatever reason, forfeits eligibility to purchase a Habitat home.
How are homeowners selected?
Families, couples or individuals in need of decent shelter apply to local Habitat affiliates. The Homeowner Selection Committee assesses each applicant’s level of need, their willingness to become partners in the program and their ability to repay a low-interest mortgage loan. Neither race nor religion is a factor in choosing who receives a Habitat home; however, applicants must have lived or worked in our service area for 12 out of the last 36 months.
Can I volunteer even if I can’t build?
Yes. Habitat needs volunteers to work on many tasks, including working on special events, mentoring families, fundraising, preparing mailings, and providing coffees and lunches at the construction site. Call our office or click here for more information.
How are Blue Spruce Habitat staff compensated? Blue Spruce Habitat staff are either salary or hourly employees. Blue Spruce Habitat staff members do not earn a commission or bonus on home prices or funds raised.
How are the books of Blue Spruce Habitat handled? Blue Spruce Habitat books are handled by an outside accounting firm. The Board of Directors review the financials of Blue Spruce Habitat monthly. Blue Spruce Habitat books are audited yearly by an Independent Auditor.
Where can I find Blue Spruce Habitat’s 990?
Under our About Us category, click on Financials for our previous years. Want more info? Contact us.