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affordable housing

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what it means to partner with us
At Habitat for Humanity, we believe that your home can be a safe, secure, and stable foundation for pursuing your life beyond mere survival.  It can give you the opportunity to build financial strength over generations.  
Whether you’re interested in owning your own home or you’re in search of an affordable rental, partnering with Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North may be the key. Here’s what we mean.
partnership
noun - the state or condition of mutual participation; association; joint interest
A partnership with Habitat means contributing volunteer hours to Habitat and other organizations within our community. It’s being a good neighbour and community member. It’s reliably making your affordable monthly payments.  It’s maintaining a clean and tidy Habitat home. It’s representing Habitat for Humanity with kindness and integrity.  It’s sharing your story and how partnering with Habitat has helped you build a brighter future for you and your family.
Do you qualify?
who qualifies for affordable housing?
minimum Requirements
The following are the minimum requirements for families to be considered for either of our home ownership or affordable rental programs.    
  • All family members moving into the homes must be Canadian citizens or Permanent Residents
  • At least one of the applicants (applicant or co-applicant) must be employed full-time, or full-time-equivalent.
  • Applicant and/or co-applicant must have at least 2-3 years of employment history (Record of Employment must be provided).
  • Applicant/co-applicant must be first-time homebuyers.
  • Minimum gross annual income for all applicants combined: $30,000 (supporting documentation required)
  • No bankruptcies (must have been discharged two or more years ago); consumer proposals will be considered on case-by-case basis.
  • Preference will be given to families who already work or live in the regions within which we are building (eg. if you are applying for a Bracebridge home, it would be preferred – but not mandatory – that you live or work in the Muskoka Region).
ability to pay a mortgage
Habitat for Humanity does not give away homes or rental units. Families must demonstrate their ability to make affordable mortgage or rental payments
  • At least one of the applicants (applicant or co-applicant) must be employed full-time or equivalent of full-time.
  • Employment Insurance, Ontario Works, Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP), Long-term Disability Payments, or Child Tax Credits alone are not sufficient sources of income.
  • Total family income must be enough to cover the monthly costs of the Habitat home or rental unit and associated living expenses. These costs could include, but are not limited to utilities, food, clothing, and transportation. 
  • Applicants must agree to a criminal background check and a credit report. Other required documents can include, but are not limited to, paystubs, employment letters, account history, proof of making rent payments reliably.
need for affordable housing
Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North home owners are selected, in large part, based on their level of need. Families will be considered for a Habitat home if their present housing is not adequate and if they are unable to afford adequate housing through other conventional means.
Considerations:
The following list gives some examples of situations that demonstrate a need for affordable housing.
  • Current living conditions are overcrowded, unsafe or unhealthy (e.g., inadequate structure, unsafe wiring, poor heating, air quality, plumbing, sanitation, etc.)
  • Current housing costs are unaffordable (e.g., basic shelter costs exceed 30% of total family income)
  • Barriers exist for physically challenged family members who require accessible housing
Willingness to partner
Each family selected for a Habitat home becomes our partner. Habitat families are our greatest champions and help us with a variety of initiatives that advance our mission. Each selected family will be asked to fulfill the following partnership requirements:
  • Be an ambassador for Habitat for Humanity.  This means you understand and agree with our home ownership or tenancy model. It also means you’re willing to share your experience as a Habitat partner family through participation in events, in photos, videos, or on social media.
  • Contribute volunteer hours to Habitat build projects, Habitat ReStore operations, and other organizations within our community. 
  • Be a good neighbour and community member. 
  • Make your affordable monthly payments reliably.  
  • Maintain a clean and tidy Habitat home. 
  • Represent Habitat for Humanity with kindness and integrity.  
  • Share your story and tell others about how partnering with Habitat has helped you build a brighter future for you and your family.
  • Sign a Habitat Partnership Agreement
  • Attend homeowner education workshops to learn about the responsibilities of maintaining a working, healthy home.  Workshop topics include budgeting, neighbourly conduct, and home maintenance.
Frequently asked questions (FAQ)
Where are Habitat for Humanity Ontario Gateway North’s (OGN) upcoming affordable housing opportunities located? 
All confirmed build projects in OGN territory are listed below.
District of Muskoka 
Affordable Rental - four families
Huntsville - 11 Irene Street - two two-bedroom, 1000 sq. ft. fully accessible units and two two-bedroom, 1000 sq. ft. upper units - complete
Deferred Home Ownership (long-term, affordable rent to own) - four families
Bala - 1016 Elm Street - semi-detached, 860 sq. ft. universally accessible, two-bedroom units - completion in the winter of 2022
Gravenhurst - 369 Muskoka Beach Road - semi-detached, 860 sq. ft. universally accessible, two-bedroom units - breaking ground in the spring of 2023; completion in the winter of 2023
North Simcoe County
Home Ownership - two families
Midland - 808 Birchwood Drive - semi-detached, 860 sq. it. Universally accessible, two-bedroom units - completion in the spring of 2022 

Image: Image of two young girls doing cartwheels in their front yard

Where do I begin?
What is the process of applying?
Step 1:Fill out eligibility questionnaire
Step 2:Your eligibility questionnaire will be carefully reviewed by our family services team. If you are selected for the next steps you will be contacted by email and asked to cooperate in the completion of a criminal background and credit check (at no cost to you).
Step 3:Pending acceptable financial and police background check results, you will be asked to complete our full affordable housing application.
Step 4:If your full application is successful, we will conduct a home visit and in-person interview.
Step 5:We will conduct an evaluation of all of the information gathered and potentially make a recommendation to our CEO for approval.
Step 6:Pending CEO approval, we will inform you that you've been selected for a Habitat home by video conference, phone, or in person.
The first step is completion of the eligibility questionnaire. Once that’s been submitted, it will be reviewed by our Family Services team. If you’re eligible for next steps, you will be contacted by email and asked to cooperate in the completion of criminal background and credit checks (at no cost to you).  Pending those acceptable results, you will be asked to complete our full affordable housing application. If your full application is successful, we will conduct a home visit and in-person interview.  The last stage of the application process is an evaluation of all of the information gathered and (potentially) a recommendation to our CEO for approval.
How will I know if I’ve been approved (selected for a Habitat home)?
Pending CEO approval, we will inform you that you've been selected for a Habitat home by video conference, phone, or in person.
How will I know if my application has not been approved (selected for a Habitat home)?
Prior to the full application stage, we will only contact you if you've successfully met the screening criteria for a full application.  After the full application, you will be informed by email if you have not been selected for a Habitat home.
Why was my application declined?
We examine all factors contained in your completed application.  In order to be considered for a Habitat home, you must have;
  • Ability to Make Affordable Monthly Payments. Your total gross, annual family income must meet the minimum requirement of $30,000
  • Acceptable Background Checks. Both your Financial and Police background checks must be acceptable.
  • Need for Affordable Housing. Your current living conditions are unsuitable, unsafe, unhealthy, or unaffordable. And/or
  • Need for Accessible Housing. For families who may be affected by mobility challenges, there are barriers in your current accommodation 
  • Family size. The size of your family must be an appropriate match with the size of the unit.
If my application is declined, can I be considered for future home ownership or rental opportunities?
If you have been declined for financial reasons, you are welcome to apply for future affordable housing opportunities with improved eligibility.
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