Homeownership Program Eligibility
Becoming a homeowner is a big step that can provide financial stability and a safe, healthy home for families to live and grow.
How is purchasing a home through Habitat different than buying through a mortgage lender?
Habitat homes are sold to partner families on a 30-year mortgage at 0% interest
Habitat homes have an interior safe room that meet FEMA standards
Partner families work with staff and community members to build their homes and their neighbor's home.
You have lived or worked in Tuscaloosa County for at least 6 months
You are NOT required to register as a sex offender in any jurisdiction
Other criminal offenses are considered on a case by case basis
Need for Better Housing
You may qualify for our Homeownership Program if ONE (1) of the following describes your current housing:
Unsafe or in poor condition
Overcrowded (not enough bedrooms for family members)
Temporary or subsidized housing
Costs more than 30% of your household income
Ability to Pay
Habitat houses are not free. Applicants must demonstrate the ability to make a monthly mortgage payment and handle routine repairs and maintenance to their home. In order to qualify, you will need:
A steady, reliable income that is within our income guidelines
Ability to make a mortgage payment of $550-$650 per month (cannot exceed 30% of gross income)
An acceptable level of debt (this includes car payments, credit card minimum payments, student loans, etc.)
No active liens, judgements, or garnishments
Non-medical collections must be less than $2,000
Any previous bankruptcy or foreclosure has been discharged for at least 3 years
Willingness to Partner
A unique aspect of our program is that families partner with community members, friends, and neighbors, and Habitat to build their own home and other families’ homes. This is called “sweat equity.”
Be willing to complete 250 - 350 hours of sweat equity
Make a down payment of $1,000 ($200 is due upon acceptance)
Amounts are based on gross income (before taxes). You can calculate your gross monthly income by dividing your yearly income (reg. income, bonuses, overtime, etc.) by 12. Habitat's income guidelines are adjusted yearly based on HUD's Area Median Income.
Homeownership Application Process
① Attend a Virtual Orientation Session
(2022 sessions are complete -- 2023 sessions TBA)
② Submit your application by the deadline
③ Complete an in-person application interview
④ Family Selection Committee home visit to determine
willingness to partner and need
⑤ Family Selection Committee and Board of Directors Review
We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the nation. We encourage and support an affirmative advertising and marketing program in which there are no barriers to obtaining housing because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, national origin, age, marital status, sexual orientation, or sources of income.