By B.C. Manion
Habitat for Humanity of East & Central Pasco is hosting an open house on Thursday, Oct. 20, so people who need a decent home can find out more about applying to the program.
The session will be from 5:30-7 p.m. at the Habit Office, 15000 Citrus Country Drive, Suite 420, in Dade City.
Those who are interested will be able to meet individually with Habitat staff members to ask questions and be guided, step by step, through the eligibility process, said Kaci Wubbena, director of family services for the organization. There are no set appointments.
“Come as you can,” she encouraged.
The session is intended to give people a more thorough understanding of the program’s criteria, Wubbena said.
Those who are interested are not required to bring any documents with them to the open house, she said.
The organization’s boundaries are from Land O’ Lakes east to the Pasco County line.
Habitat for Humanity of East & Central Pasco seeks to eliminate poverty housing and to make decent housing available. The organization builds houses with east and central families in need. Volunteer labor builds the homes, to keep costs low. Once a family is selected, the family must invest a minimum of 400 hours of sweat equity.
The organization accepts applications year-round and its Family Selection Committee reviews the applications and chooses families based on need, their willingness to become partners in the program and their ability to repay the no-interest mortgage.
Most of the houses built have three bedrooms and one bathroom.
The houses are affordable because there is no profit included in the home price and no interest is charged on the mortgage, which is financed for 30 years.
The program’s selection criteria include income guidelines, background and credit checks, current rent and relationships with landlords and other factors.
Additionally, qualifying families must have lived in east or central Pasco for at least the past 12 months, the wage earner must have been in the same job for at least a year, there cannot have been any recent bankruptcies or judgments, and the applicant must be married, single or divorced. Those who are separated must wait until their divorce is final to apply.
Habitat for Humanity of East & Central Pasco has built 91 houses since its founding in 1994 and is on schedule to complete its 100th home this year.
For additional information about the program, visit www.habitatpasco.org or call (352) 567-1444.
What: Habitat for Humanity of East & Central Pasco Open House
When: 5:30-7 p.m. on Oct. 20
Where: The Dade City Business Center, 15000 Citrus Country Drive, Suite 420, Dade City. Please use the US 301 and Lock Street entrance
Why: To find out the criteria for applying for a Habitat home.