Frequently Asked Questions: Buying a Houston Habitat home
Preguntas mas frecuentes: la compra de una casa del Habitat de Houston
Will Houston Habitat give me a house?
No, but if you meet the criteria and are accepted into the program, we will invite you to become a Houston Habitat Family Partner and purchase one of our homes. Our homes are sold with no down payment (other than sweat equity) and with a 0% interest rate.
What is the first step toward purchasing a new home?
If you are interested in the Houston Habitat program and have reviewed the requirements, the next step is to attend an information session to learn more about our program and receive an application. Information sessions are generally held once or twice a year. To find out about the next upcoming information session, please fill out the homeowner interest form on our website. You will be put on our mailing list, and we will send information about our next session as soon as we have the dates confirmed.
How are family partners selected?
After attending an information session, applicants need to submit an application within 2 weeks. Applications are reviewed, and a home interview will be scheduled. The Family Selection committee members then decide which families will be selected.
Will Houston Habitat run a credit check?
Yes. We will ask you as a homeowner applicant to submit financial documentation to us. We will verify employment, check credit, and make an assessment as to whether Houston Habitat is an appropriate program for you.
What is sweat equity?
Sweat equity builds partnership, pride in homeownership and development of skills and knowledge. Following approval by the selection committee, the future homeowner must complete 300 hours of sweat equity before being able to purchase their home. Your friends and family may also help work toward your hours, and you may do sweat equity on our construction sites, in the office, or at our retail store.
How long is the process?
Ideally construction of a home begins within a year from the time of approval, and completion of the home will vary depending on our overall construction schedule. The construction process is a complex one with many variables depending on funding sources and the building requirements, and this complexity makes it difficult to predict the length of time from purchase of a property to completion of home(s).
What kinds of homes does Houston Habitat for Humanity build?
We build three- to four-bedroom single family homes with approximately 1300 square feet depending on the family size. Our homes are either brick exterior or have siding – the size and layout depend on our construction schedule, funding sources, and each family’s needs. We are able to build to ADA standards at request.
What else is expected of family partners?
In addition to sweat equity and homeowner classes, we ask families to share their stories. We occasionally get family partners to talk about the program or be featured in media, but we always respect your privacy and wishes. At Houston Habitat we build community by asking you to meet neighbors, get involved in Homeowners’ Associations and becoming a true partner to our program.