Habitat for Humanity of Pinellas and West Pasco Counties builds and sells homes at no profit and no interest to households who do not qualify for a traditional mortgage. The program prepares homeowner partners to be successful homeowners through an education curriculum of 20 classes, from budgeting to home maintenance.
frequently asked questions
How long is the program and what am I required to do?
- You set the pace! Expect to be in the program for 6 to 18 months to complete all the requirements.
- Attend 20 homeownership classes on topics like budgeting, home safety and maintenance.
- Volunteer 350-450 hours of “sweat equity”.
- Contribute $1,000 toward closing costs.
What will my monthly payments include?
- Payments include the principal cost of the home (paid over 30 to 40 years with no interest) and escrow for Pinellas and Pasco Counties property taxes and homeowner insurance.
What makes a Habitat home affordable?
- Habitat homes are sold at no profit.
- They are financed with a 0% interest, 30 to 40-year mortgage.
- We are able to do this because the homes are funded by local corporations, the faith-based community and individuals, and they are built by volunteers working with future homeowners.
What’s the impact of a 0% interest mortgage?
See the chart below. The traditional 30 year mortgage (left) has a 5% interest rate. As the chart indicates, for a $175,000 mortgage a homeowner will pay an estimated $163,197.62 in interest payments alone over the term of the loan for a total loan amount of $338,197.62! Habitat homeowners receive a 0% interest loan (right), which saves $163,000 in interest payments over the life of the loan and makes the monthly payments affordable.
Do I have to have children to apply?
We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the nation. We encourage any qualified applicant to apply and there are no barriers to obtaining housing because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin.
Do I qualify?
You must meet the following criteria:
- Fit a specific income range.
- Have a housing need. Are your current conditions:
- Overcrowded, substandard, unsafe?
- Require a very high percentage of your income for rent (more than 30% of your monthly income)?
- Have lived or worked in Pinellas or Pasco Counties for at least one year
- Have one year of steady, reliable income
- Have reasonably good credit. We don’t require perfect credit. We consider families who demonstrate the ability to make regular payments on their bills.
I want to hear from a current homeowner. How can I read their stories?
Visit our Homeowner Bio blog and read the stories and successes they have achieved through the program.
How do I apply?
1. Visit habitatpwp.org/apply to review the program criteria and steps.
2. Complete a 15 minute online orientation. After the orientation, you will be able to register for a Homebuyer Application Session to complete an application screening to learn if you are eligible for selection into the program. Visit the website for the next open orientation and appointment sign up session as there are limited spots each month.
3. Attend a Homebuyer Application Session. Habitat staff will walk you through the application process. The application asks for specific information and background on your living and financial situation. After you complete your application, it is reviewed by a selection committee, which also conducts interviews and a home visit. Be aware that the application review process may take two to three months.
4. Approved households will be invited to attend a two night “Welcome to Habitat” orientation and can start on their sweat equity hours right away. If declined, we encourage you to work on areas of concern and reapply.
*Beginning on July 1, 2018 a non-refundable $25 – $35 processing fee will apply to all applications.