HABITAT FOR HUMANITY
By Charity A. Hicks
Habitat for Humanity is a non-profit agency
dedicated in providing low cost housing to those with low
income and for first-time home buyers. The organization is
Christian-based and internationally funded. This
organization seeks to provide affordable housing for those
who live in overcrowded and poor living conditions. They
also serve the community by helping first-time home buyers
who do not qualify for traditional home loans.
A purchasing family pays for the home by helping to
build it, and also the loan is at zero percent interest;
therefore, a home is made more affordable due to the no
interest loan. Moreover, a qualifying family will donate
what is called “sweat equity hours,” which must total 400
(100 hours are towards a neighbor’s home, and 300 hours must
be sweat on their own to be home). Volunteers can contribute
to the organization in the following ways: construction,
fundraising, family services, and office work.
I spent time with Habitat for Humanity with a group
of fellow students from ASU West. We helped paint,
landscape, clean-up, and whatever else the maintenance crew
found for us. This program has had a phenomenal impact on
the community. Hundreds of families are able to live in nice
homes and neighborhoods while paying only a fraction of what
it would cost to own their homes with conventional lending.
People who could only dream of one day owning their own home
due to the expenses of purchasing property (closing costs
and especially interest tacked onto each month’s payment)
can now live in beautiful neighborhoods at about the same
rate as renting an apartment.