Apply for a
Essex County Habitat builds decent, affordable, homes for low-income families in need of housing. The homes are built in partnership with the future Habitat homeowners and volunteers. Habitat sells the homes to approved partner families at no profit and provides a no-interest 20-30 year mortgage.
We believe in the importance of a home to the family and to the community. Essex County Habitat for Humanity gives families a hand up, not a handout. We have specific qualifications and a defined application process, all managed by our Family Selection Committee.
To be considered, all Essex County Habitat for Humanity applicants must attend one of the above informational meetings, meet the following criteria, and complete an application.
- Be legal residents or citizens in status
- Have two years of taxable income reported
- Be first-time homeowners
How to Qualify
Essex County Habitat for Humanity uses three main selection criteria to determine eligibility for homeownership.
- Need for Adequate Shelter – The first consideration in selecting a partner family is the lack of adequate shelter. Typically, our families come to us from overcrowded or substandard housing, and often they have had to give up too much of their income for shelter.
- Income and Ability to Pay – The family income must meet our income requirements and be able adequate to cover monthly housing costs of approximately $675-$700.
- Willingness to Partner – The family must demonstrate a willingness to participate as a partner with Habitat. Prospective homeowners must demonstrate a commitment to their home and community, as well as to Habitat.
To learn more about qualifying, see Qualifying for ECHFH Homeownership.
How to Apply
- Contact our Family Services Coordinator by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 978-681-8858 – to request an application and sign up to attend our annually scheduled information meeting, or to schedule a meeting with the Family Services Coordinator. All candidates who want to become an Essex County Habitat for Humanity homeowner partner are encouraged to attend an information meeting when submitting an application. Information meetings are held once a year in the fall.
- Submit Your Application
- Interview with the Family Selection Committee (FSC)
The FSC reviews all applications and interviews with those who are found to be most in need of housing and who meet all the selection criteria.
- Application Review and Recommendation
The FSC identifies the best-qualified candidates and presents them to the Essex County Habitat of Directors for consideration.
- Partnership Begins
To learn more about applying, see Applying for ECHFH Homeownership.
Selected homeowners are required to:
- Participate in all Habitat first-time homebuyer educational workshops.
- Contribute between 240 and 360 “sweat equity hours” in working on building their home.
- Pay closing costs estimated to be about $3,000.
- Participate in the management of a condominium association where applicable.
- Participate in and support Essex County Habitat events and programs.
Homeowner applicants must be willing to live where ECHFH has land on which to build or where ECHFH is rehabilitating a home that ECHFH owns.
- ECHFH DOES NOT build houses on land owned by an applicant.
- ECHFH DOES NOT modify house plans at the request of the applicant, or accepted homeowner families, except in the case of certain documented medical conditions and as determined on a case-by-case basis.
- ECHFH typically builds 2 stories, 3 bedrooms, 1 1/2 baths homes. However, the size of your family will determine the size of the home you qualify for.