To apply for a home
If you are interested in applying for a Habitat for Humanity home, you may pick up our
family selection criteria and application at the following locations:

  • Orange County Community Foundation Building, 112 W. Water St. , Paoli
  • Orleans Public Library, 174 N. Maple St., Orleans
  • Judy Meehan & Associates Real Estate, 8258 W. College St., French Lick

Habitat for Humanity of Orange County is a Christian organization which builds houses in
partnership with those in need of affordable decent housing without discrimination because
of age, race, religion, marital status, sex or national origin.  Applicant households must
have resided in Orange County for a period of at least one year and be at least eighteen
years of age.  The applicant household must understand that an in-depth investigation will
be conducted by the selection committee to determine actual need, ability to pay for Habitat
housing, good character, financial history, and reputation for honesty.  The investigation
will include personal interviews and visits by the committee members.  The applicant family
will need to be in agreement with the rules and the covenant of Habitat for Humanity, and
be willing to become true partners in the work of Habitat in this area.


1.  The actual need as determined by the condition of the current shelter.
2.  The ability to pay for Habitat housing.
3.  The willingness to partner with Orange County Habitat for Humanity.

I.        ACTUAL NEED:
First priority will be given to the families who do not presently have adequate housing and
who do not have the financial means to rent or build according to current conventional

A.  Inadequate current shelter because of problems with heating, water supply,
            electricity, bathroom(s), kitchen, structure accessibility, etc.
B.  Inadequate number of bedrooms as determined by the:
  1.  Number of persons in household
  2.  Ages of household members
  3.  Gender of household members
C.  The percentage of their monthly income that the family currently spends on


Since Habitat homeowners are expected to repay the entire cost of materials for building
over a specified period, the ability to pay must be considered.

A.  Is there any other way to meet the need for a decent house as determined by
the inability to secure, or ineligibility to qualify for a conventional loan?

B.  Household income will not be threatened by homeownership (e.g. the source
of the household income stops or decreases if the applicant household owns
a home).

C.  Amount of Income:
  1.  A combined household monthly income approximately equal to four
times the monthly mortgage payment (current monthly mortgage
payments average approximately $275) and a maximum approximately
equal to six times the monthly mortgage payment. Current expenses
and credit history will also be checked to verify ability to pay.
  2.  Ability to pay 1% of value of Habitat house as a down payment.  This
payment is to be paid on, or before, the closing date (unless other
special arrangements have been made and cannot be a gift or loan to    
the applicant).
  3.  Every three years, the family situation may be reassessed and the
mortgage readjusted to be one-fourth the family income, not to exceed     
$500.00 per month.
  4.  Ability to pay for insurance and taxes and to properly maintain the
property.  (Taxes and insurance will be a part of each monthly
mortgage payment and maintenance funds may also be collected if
deemed necessary in some circumstances).

D.  Financial counseling, at no cost to the partner family, will be required to
insure that the family will be able to manage the financial responsibilities
involved in home ownership.  The family must be agreeable to this condition.

E.  “Sweat Equity” will be required of each partner family.  20% (50) of sweat
equity hours must be completed prior to construction beginning on applicant’s
home.  100% (250) of sweat equity hours must be completed prior to the    
Habitat family moving into the home and the transfer of title.  Children over
fifteen (15) years of age may earn sweat equity hours as an adult.  Extended  
family members and friends may contribute to the sweat equity hours for the
partner family.


An applicant family must exhibit a sincere desire for home ownership and be willing to
accept the following responsibilities:

A.  Disclosure of financial and personal situation, e.g. places of employment,
household income, present household indebtedness.
B.  Follow-through on Habitat housing application requirements.

C.  Contribute financially and/or otherwise to the goals of the Orange County
Habitat group and become an active member and participate in as many
activities as possible.

D.  Assist in the construction of their Habitat house in whatever ways possible.       
Some samples are:
  1.  Cleaning
  2.  Painting and/or wallpapering
  3.  Active construction
  4.  Provisions of food for workers
  5.  House watching (security)
  6.  Lead devotions at work site

E.  Show a willingness to share their story and help in the promotion of the
Habitat vision.

F.  Maintenance and repairs of the house after occupancy
  1.  Physical capability of maintenance.  (If there is a physical handicap
which would make it impossible for personal upkeep of the property, a
maintenance fund might be suggested to allow the family to hire
necessary work to be done.)
  2.  Knowledge of proper maintenance methods.  (If basic instruction in
housekeeping and maintenance appears necessary, the Habitat nurture
group will assist.)
G.  Payment of mortgage payments, inclusive of insurance, taxes, and utilities in a
timely manner.
H.  Willingness to grant, during the term of the mortgage, Orange County Habitat
the first option to buy back the house at a maximum of the original cost plus a
percentage of any appreciated value as determined by an appraisal, less the
remaining balance on the mortgages.
I.  Agreement to a combination deed of trust/promissory note wherein the first
mortgage on the property will be for the selling price of the home.  A second
mortgage will be placed on the property for the amount of the difference
between the selling price and the appraised value.  This second mortgage (and
the accompanying promissory note) dissolves an equal percentage as the
original mortgage so that each will be paid off at the same time.
J.  Agree to give the first option of “buy back” to Orange County Habitat in the
event the home must be sold during the life of the mortgage.


The following procedure will be used in choosing a family:
1.  Application submitted
2.  References and Credit History Checked
3.  Home visits and interviews by Family Selection Committee
4.  Recommendations by the Family Selection Committee
5.  Board approval
6.  Signed covenants and agreements

When all other Selection Criteria are met, the family whose application was first received will
be chosen.
"With Habitat, we build more than just houses.
We build families, community and hope."      
                                 President Jimmy Carter