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Frequently Asked Questions

What is Avery County Habitat for Humanity?
Avery County Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit, ecumenical Christian housing ministry seeking to eliminate sub-standard housing and to make decent shelter a matter of conscience and action. Habitat invites people from all walks of life to work together to build houses with families in need. Since it’s start in 1991, Avery Habitat has built 36 homes, changing the lives of over 100 men, women, and children.

What does Avery County Habitat For Humanity do and how does it work?
Habitat for Humanity is not a charity or a give away program, but  rather builds houses in partnership with Avery County families in need. Volunteer labor is used to keep building costs low, and partner families make a down payment and a monthly payment on a 0% interest 20 or 25 year mortgage. They also invest hundreds of hours of their own labor — sweat equity– into building their own houses and the houses of others. As Habitat homeowners pay their mortgages, the money goes into a revolving fund that helps build houses with other families. Additionally, Avery Habitat tithes 10 percent of its unrestricted contributions to help build houses in Guatemala, its partner affiliate. To date, Avery Habitat has funded 24 houses in Guatemala.

How are partner families selected?
We accept applications from local families on a continuous basis. The applicants must be documented residents of the US and residents or working in Avery County for at least one year prior to application. Our 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. Avery County Habitat for Humanity does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, national origin, marital status, or age in choosing partner families. Please visit the Family Selection Criteria page for more information and contact us if you think you might qualify to become a Habitat homeowner.

Where are Avery Habitat’s houses built and who builds them?
The majority of our building for the next few years will be in our Milford Meadows development on Miles Field Road near Elk Park. Individuals and groups from churches, civic organizations, and businesses donate their time and energy to help build the houses. Partner families also invest at least 500 hours of sweat equity. Additionally, we host out of town volunteer groups through programs such as Collegiate Challenge, Care-A-Vanners, and others.

How big is a Habitat house and how much does it cost to build one?
In Avery County it costs approximately $87,000 to build one house. The typical house built by Avery County Habitat averages 1100 square feet of finished living area. Most homes have  3 or 4 bedrooms. They are affordable to low-income families because no profit is included in the sale of the house and no interest is charged on the mortgage. The mortgages are financed over 20 or 25 years.

How does Avery Habitat get money to build houses?
We operate on donations from churches, businesses, corporations, organizations, and individuals. Habitat accepts government funds for the acquisition of land, for building, and for infrastructure (streets, utilities, etc.) costs, so long as the funds have no conditions that would violate Habitat’s principles or limit its ability to proclaim its Christian witness. Individuals, groups, and churches can also join together to sponsor a whole house. Visit the Sponsorship Page to learn more about this opportunity.

How can I become involved with Avery Habitat for Humanity?
There are many different ways that you can volunteer with Habitat for Humanity. We welcome individuals as well as groups on the construction site. You can serve on one of our committees. You can host or attend a special event or fundraiser, donate materials or simply donate money. You can facilitate a presentation about Habitat for your church or civic group.  Volunteering and shopping at our Home Store is an excellent way to help. For more information on getting involved, please visit our Get Involved page.