volunteer. buy. thrive.

homeownership

You’re helping families to break the cycle of poverty and build long-term financial security. Habitat’s affordable, no-profit house payments free up money for food, child care, medicine and other necessities. And research has shown that decent housing improves health,increases children’s educational achievement and strengthens community ties.

 

Habitat for Humanity of the Lehigh Valley’s mission is to help families in need with a hand up, not a hand out. Many families in the Lehigh Valley pay very high rents for substandard housing.Many hold jobs that do not pay enough to allow them to purchase a home in any municipality in Lehigh or Northampton County. Habitat for Humanity of the Lehigh Valley gives a family that meets its selection requirements the chance to own a home.

The typical Habitat Lehigh Valley family earns between 35% – 80% of the median income for the Lehigh Valley. Many people who currently reside in shelters in the Lehigh Valley are earning an income that would qualify them for participation in the Habitat Lehigh Valley Home Ownership program.

Volunteers mixing paint

owning a home

We do not give away homes or provide emergency housing. We work in partnership with deserving families to help them secure a better place to live and raise their families. We do this through our Habitat Home Ownership program.

Families who wish to participate in the Habitat Home Ownership program must meet the selection criteria established by Habitat for Humanity International. The criteria are:

  • Income-Families must meet specific income guidelines, be able to make low monthly mortgage payments and have an acceptable credit record.
  • Partner-Families must be willing to partner with Habitat Lehigh Valley by contributing at least 250 hours of sweat equity toward the construction of their home and other Habitat Lehigh Valley houses.
  • Commitment-Families must agree to attend home ownership and budgeting classes.
  • Need-Families must demonstrate the inadequacy of their current living situation (poor structure, overcrowding, high rent, high crime area, etc.) and a need for decent, affordable housing.
  • Community-Families must reside in the Lehigh Valley for at least the previous 12 months and must be dedicated to the community.
Row of cans of paint

available properties

Habitat partner families are carefully selected to ensure that they are well-prepared and qualified for homeownership. Between the selection process and the sweat equity period, it could take 18-24 months to move into a new Habitat home. Applicants complete an extensive selection process, including an in-depth financial review, underwriting analysis and at-home visits. Applicant(s) must be legal US residents and first-time homeowners (must not have owned a home in the last 3 years).

Volunteers mixing paint

neighborhood revitalization

The mission of the NR program is to serve more families by responding to community aspirations with an expanded array of products, services, and collaborations, empowering residents to revive their neighborhoods and enhance their quality of life. The NR program is Habitat’s broader community development strategy that expands services to low income homeowners who struggle to maintain the exterior preservation of their homes.These projects correlate to the organization’s mission by offering families in need a hand up, not a hand out, all while guiding them as they realize the dream of homeownership.