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Homeownership through Habitat

Habitat for Humanity of Lee and Hendry Counties is a HUD-approved housing counseling agency that builds new and rehabilitates existing homes and sells them to qualified, low-income families by using an affordable mortgage. Monthly mortgage payments are set at 30% or less of the homeowner’s income making homeownership an affordable reality.

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Online Homeownership Information Meetings

This one-hour, live session explains the program and steps to homeownership.

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How do I qualify to purchase a home with Habitat for Humanity?

Habitat for Humanity of Lee and Hendry Counties partners with low income families and individuals who need decent, affordable housing.

Basic Requirements

  • You must have lived or worked in Lee or Hendry Counties for the past 12 months
  • You must be a US citizen or permanent resident
  • Attend a counseling session with a HUD-certified Housing Counselor
  • If married, you must apply with your spouse
  • You must wait 3 years after foreclosure or bankruptcy has been finalized
  • You must have two years of verifiable income and the ability to repay the mortgage

Need

  • Home is in poor physical condition
  • Home is overcrowded
  • Rent is subsidized
  • Rent is more than 30% of income
  • Your household gross income is below 80% of the area median income

Ability to pay

  • You do not have any judgments or liens against you
  • You do not have excessive debt or multiple accounts in collection
  • You have a consistent and verifiable income to qualify for a mortgage loan

Willingness to partner

  • Contribute 300 hours of “sweat equity”
  • Attend Habitat homeowner workshops
  • Pay $2,000 toward closing costs
  • Meet with a Habitat housing counselor

The Path to Homeownership

Take the first step:

Complete a Housing Counseling Intake Packet

HOUSING COUNSELING INTAKE PACKET
Pick-up a packet at our Admin Office:
12751 New Brittany Blvd., Suite 100 
Fort Myers, FL 33907

or

Labelle Office at the United Way House:
133 Bridge St., LaBelle, FL 33935
(Open Wednesdays, 9am to 12:30pm) 

CONSEJERÍA DE VIVIENDA PAQUETE INICIAL
Request a packet by phone:
239-652-1675
Request a packet by email:
HousingCounseling@habitat4humanity.org

Use the checklist on page 2 of the Intake Packet to gather everything you need before submitting it:

$30 credit report fee (per individual)

Copies of Photo ID

Proof of Income

Bank Statements

Submit a Housing Counseling Intake Packet

  • In person or by mail to our Admin Office located at 12751 New Brittany Blvd., Suite 100, Fort Myers, FL 33907. Hours: Monday-Friday, 8am-4:30pm.
  • In person at our Labelle Office inside United Way House at 133 Bridge St., LaBelle, FL 33935. Hours: Wednesdays, 9am-12:30pm.

What happens after submitting an intake packet?

  • When you drop off your Intake Packet, one of our intake Coordinators can review it with you to ensure it is complete.
  • Your packet must be filled out completely and signed, along with all forms and copies of required documentation, including the credit report fee.
  • If we do not receive a complete Intake Packet, we will NOT be able to schedule your appointment with a housing advisor.
  • It can take 3-4 weeks before you receive follow-up from Habitat for Humanity.

What is Housing Counseling?

Whether you qualify for Habitat’s Affordable Homeownership Program or not, our Housing Counselors are here to help. The Housing Counseling program provides counseling to individuals seeking financing, maintaining their home, or homeownership. Our HUD-certified Housing Counselors can provide you with one-on-one housing counseling and guidance to help you achieve your goals. This guidance is based on your need, plus, your current and future financial capability.

Frequently Asked Questions

HOW CAN I GET STARTED WITH THE PATH TO HOMEOWNERSHIP?

If you would like to get started, the first step would be to submit an intake packet. Once you submit your intake packet with copies of all documents requested, you will receive a call from a housing advisor to set up your first one-on-one appointment​.

With your assigned HUD-certified housing counselor, you will identify your needs, calculate your income, review your credit report, review your financial situation, determine affordability, and assess mortgage readiness.

If you would like to fill out an intake packet, you can pick one up at our office in Fort Myers, or you can contact our Housing Counseling Team (HousingCounseling@habitat4humanity.org) to receive one through email.

HOW TO TURN IN THE HOUSING COUNSELING INTAKE PACKET

You can submit an intake packet to our Housing Counseling Team (HousingCounseling@habitat4humanity.org) during regular business days at our office.

  • Intake packet must be filled out completely and signed, along with all the forms and copies of required documentation
  • Monday-Friday 8 AM-4:30 PM
  • If you need to drop off your intake packet outside business hours, please contact our Housing Counseling Team to make an appointment (weekdays only)

WHEN AND WHERE ARE THE HOMEOWNER INFORMATION MEETINGS HELD?

Attend one of our Online Homeownership Information Meetings to learn about our Habitat Homeownership program. This one-hour meeting is offered in both English and Spanish. See the meeting schedule above for details, registration is required.

You do not need to attend this meeting in order to obtain or submit an intake packet, but it’s a great way to get information about the homeownership process and program requirements before applying.

WHERE CAN I FIND THE LIST OF HOMES AVAILABLE?

Once you fill out and complete the intake packet, you will receive a call from a housing counselor to set up your first one-on-one appointment. During this appointment, the housing counselor will inform you of the upcoming new constructions in various areas within Lee and Hendry County.

WHAT DOES THE PATH TO HOMEOWNERSHIP WITH HABITAT LOOK LIKE?

  1. The first step would be to complete an intake packet and attach copies of all the documents requested. Once you fill out and complete the intake packet, you will receive a call from a housing advisor to set up your first one-on-one appointment.
  2. Once you complete your intake packet and submit it at the office or by mail, a housing advisor will reach out you to set up a housing counseling file. With your assigned HUD-certified housing counselor, you will identify your needs, calculate your income, review your credit report, review your financial situation, determine affordability, and assess mortgage readiness.
  3. Once you discuss your homeownership readiness with your assigned housing counselor, the housing counselor will provide you with options. If you choose to continue using us as your lender, you will be guided to submit a pre-application. We have 30-days to process the pre-application. If it is a denial, you will receive a letter in the mail stating the denial reason, if you are pre-qualified you will receive a call from Housing Finance to discuss your home selection. ​
  4. Once you speak to Housing Finance, your file will be presented to Selection Committee. Selection Committee is a group of volunteers who will be reviewing your file anonymously. ​
  5. If you are selected as a future homeowner, you will attend orientation and begin your partnership requirements. ​
  6. The end goal would be to become a homeowner!

IF I AM SELECTED, HOW MANY SWEAT EQUITY HOURS AM I REQUIRED TO COMPLETE?

300 hours of sweat equity are required before closing on a home. 150 hours out of the 300 hours must be completed by the applicant(s). 150 hours out of the 300 hours can be completed by family members, and 150 hours out of the 300 hours must be completed in the construction site.

HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE BEFORE I CAN MOVE INTO A HABITAT HOME ONCE I AM SELECTED?

It may take several months before you can move into your Habitat home. You will need to satisfy all your partnership requirements while our construction team partners with you and other volunteers to build your home. There are several factors that go into your partnership schedule as well as the construction schedule.