About Us : Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How does Habitat work?
  2. Who are these homes for?
  3. What makes these homes affordable for families in need?
  4. What do you mean by a partner family?
  5. What factors are looked at by the selection committee in choosing a partner family?
  6. Where do the mortgage payments go?
  7. What is the average size of a Habitat home?
  8. What happens when the income/financial position of a family changes?
  9. What if the family decides to sell their house at a profit, just months after they take possession?
  10. What Is The Habitat ReStore?
  11. Where is Huron County ReStore?
  12. How can I find out more about Habitat for Humanity Huron County?
  13. How can I be part of Habitat for Humanity Huron County?
  14. How does Habitat work?
  15. Who can apply for a Habitat home?
  16. What is the family income?
  17. What are the other requirements?
  18. What are my chances of being selected?
  19. What happens after I submit my application?
  20. What if a family income earner is unable to work due to a disability?
  21. How does a family apply for a Habitat house?

How does Habitat work?

Through volunteer labor and donations of money and materials, Habitat for Humanity Huron County builds simple, decent houses.

Who are these homes for?

There is a real shortage of affordable housing for families in Huron County. Today, many low-income working families are spending more than 50% of their income on rental housing that’s both substandard and unsafe. Housing and living costs are also rising much faster than family incomes.

What makes these homes affordable for families in need?

Habitat homes are built with donated labour, resources and funds. The home is then sold to the chosen “partner” family via a geared to income, interest free mortgage with no profit to Habitat.

What do you mean by a partner family?

When a home build is being planned, HFH Huron County advertises for families to apply. A family is then chosen from the applicants by a selection committee. In being chosen the “partner” family commits to contributing 500 hours towards the build.

What factors are looked at by the selection committee in choosing a partner family?

Several things are looked beginning with the need for adequate housing. To qualify for a Habitat house the partner families present living conditions must be demonstrated to be inadequate.

Likewise the partner family should not be able to afford to buy a house under conventional circumstances, but should have adequate income to cover mortgage payments, taxes, utilities, and insurance and maintenance expenses for the Habitat house. The partner family must have resided and/or be employed in Huron County for at least two (2) years.

Where do the mortgage payments go?

Mortgage payments from Habitat homeowners go directly into a trust to build more Habitat homes within the county. For every 9 homes built in Huron County, one additional home per year can be built from the mortgage income alone.

What is the average size of a Habitat home?

The typical square footage of a home that Habitat for Humanity builds in Huron County is 1,200 square feet.

What happens when the income/financial position of a family changes?

The income of all Habitat homeowners is reviewed on an annual basis. If income increases, monthly payments of their mortgage, property tax, insurance and condominium fees are adjusted to remain at 30% of their monthly income. If income decreases, usually due to a temporary situation such as a job loss, similar adjustments may be made to maintain affordability during this period of decreased cash flow.

What if the family decides to sell their house at a profit, just months after they take possession?

The Habitat mortgage is designed to keep monthly payments low, encourage long-term commitment, and prevent short-term profit. This is done by way of a second mortgage. The first mortgage reflects the actual cost of the house, which is usually far less than its fair market value. The second mortgage reflects the difference between the actual cost and the fair market value. No payments are made on the second mortgage until the home is sold or transferred. If a family were to sell their home in the early years of their mortgage, the outstanding balance of the first mortgage, and the full balance of the second mortgage would then be payable.

What Is The Habitat ReStore?

Habitat ReStore is a home renovation store that carries new and used building products. The ReStore supports families and the overall vision of affordable housing by providing revenue for the administrative costs so that all charitable donations go directly to building homes. In addition, the Restore provides an excellent opportunity for the whole community to purchase new building products or to recycle used building products.

Where is Huron County ReStore?

We now have 2 ReStores in Huron County.  One is located in Goderich on Hwy 21 at 120 Huckins Street.  The other is in Exeter at 309 Main St. South.  ReStore hours are Monday to Friday 10 am to 5 pm and Saturday 10 am to 4 pm.

How can I find out more about Habitat for Humanity Huron County?

We have speakers available that will come visit your church, service group, or society to explain to you what we are all about and you can ask questions that may not have been addressed in our Frequently Asked Questions.


How can I be part of Habitat for Humanity Huron County?

You can take part through financial donations, volunteering or serving on any of our committees .


How does Habitat work?

  1. We give low-income families a 'hand up - not a hand out'.
  2. We build homes with partner families using donations in the form of capital, property and/or gifts-in-kind, from companies, churches, service clubs and individuals.
  3. We build simple, decent, affordable homes through co-operative efforts of partner families, volunteers and trade professionals.
  4. We sell homes to partner families at no profit, and finance no-interest mortgages.
  5. We expect families to become home-owners and accept all responsibilities of home ownership.

Who can apply for a Habitat home?

  1. You must be able to demonstrate your need for better housing and prove your current housing situation is not adequate.
  2. You are unable to qualify for a regular mortgage from a bank but you have a steady income this is enough to cover the cost of mortgage payments, taxes, utilities, insurance and maintenance expenses of the Habitat home.
  3. You are willing and able to become a partner with Habitat for Humanity Huron County… by investing volunteer hours with Habitat in the construction of your own home and in helping with subsequent builds.
  4. You are able to provide proof of being legal residents of Canada and proof of residency in Huron County for at least two years.

What is the family income?

  1. Your family’s taxable income is above $20,000 and below the Low Income Cut-Off (LICO) established by Statistics Canada for Huron County.

What are the other requirements?

  1. You must provide personal references from people, who know you well enough and are not related to you, to recommend you as a potential Habitat partner family.
  2. You must consent to a credit check.
  3. If you have previously been bankrupt, you must produce proof of discharge, dated at least 2 years prior to your application.

What are my chances of being selected?

  1. All applications are assessed equally according to the selection criteria, so your chances are as good as those of anyone else.

What happens after I submit my application?

  1. The Family Selection Committee screens your application to determine whether your family meets the general selection criteria.
  2. Next, the Family Selection Committee will assess your application, along with all other applications that have been received.
  3. They will next decide whether your application sufficiently meets the standards to warrant a home visit from the committee.
  4. If you meet the general selection criteria, Habitat for Humanity Huron County will conduct credit and personal reference checks.
  5. After the home visit, the Family Selection Committee will assess the results and recommend one candidate partner family for endorsement by the Board of Directors.
  6. The Board of Directors will assess the recommendation presented by the committee and give the final endorsement of the partner family All families whose information is presented will be notified of the Board’s decision.

What if a family income earner is unable to work due to a disability?

  1. If you are disabled and unable to work, but have sufficient disability income, you may still apply. Please give complete information about your disability and (if applicable) information on your work history.

How does a family apply for a Habitat house?

  1. If you think you may qualify please use this form, print it off and mail it to the address on the form.  If you need any help with the form please contact us.

All information provided to Habitat for Humanity Huron County is kept confidential according to our policy on privacy.