The Habitat Model

Habitat is not a giveaway program. Our program is a hand up, not a hand out. Through volunteer labor and donations of money and materials, Beaches Habitat builds and rehabilitates simple, decent houses alongside our homeowner (partner) families.

Partner families are selected by our volunteer Family Selection committee based on
Our Four Criteria:

  1. Need – Currently living in over-crowded, sub-standard or unaffordable housing.
  2. Ability to Pay – Earning an income within certain limits, allowing the repayment of an interest-free mortgage.
  3. Willingness to Partner – Willingness to volunteer a minimum of 300 hours on the construction on their own or other’s homes.
  4. Connection to the Beaches Community – Living or working in our service area for a minimum of one year.

In addition to a down payment and monthly mortgage payments, homeowners invest hundreds of hours of their own labor (“sweat equity”) into building their Habitat house and the houses of others. Upon completion, Habitat homes are sold to our partner families at no profit and financed with zero-interest loans. The homeowners’ monthly mortgage payments go into a “Revolving Fund for Humanity” which is used to build still more Habitat homes.

Why we build

The state of the world’s housing
The world is experiencing a global housing crisis. About 1.6 billion people live in substandard housing and 100 million are homeless, according to the United Nations. These people are increasingly urban residents, and every week more than a million people are born in, or move to, cities in the developing world. Today, a billion people – 32 percent of the global urban population – live in urban slums. If no serious action is taken, the United Nations reports that the number of slum dwellers worldwide will increase over the next 30 years to nearly 2 billion.

In the United States alone, 95 million people have housing problems
That’s one third of the nation. These problems include payments too large a percentage of their income, overcrowding, poor quality shelter and homelessness. Throughout the world, people live in inadequate housing, and Habitat for Humanity is dedicated to providing decent, affordable homes for those in need.

Importance of clean, decent, and stable housing
Habitat for Humanity has shown that building homes does more than put a roof over someone’s head. In clean, decent, stable housing:

  • Families can provide stability for their children.
  • A family’s sense of dignity and pride grow.
  • Health, physical safety, and security improve
  • Educational and job prospects increase.

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