Frequently Asked Questions

What is Habitat for Humanity?

Habitat for Humanity Vail Valley, an affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, is a nonprofit housing organization. Habitat’s vision is of a world where everyone has a decent place to live. Habitat works toward our vision by building strength, stability and self-reliance in partnership with people and families in need of a decent and affordable home.

What is a Habitat for Humanity ReStore?

Habitat for Humanity ReStores are non-profit home-improvement stores and donation centers that sell new and gently used furniture, home accessories, building materials and appliances to the public at a fraction of the retail price. Habitat for Humanity Vail Valley’s ReStore is located on 751 Chambers Avenue in Eagle, Colorado. All store proceeds are used to build Habitat for Humanity homes in our local community.

How can I become a volunteer?

There are many ways to volunteer. Visit our Volunteer section to learn how to:

  • Volunteer locally
  • Travel and build
  • Volunteer at the Habitat ReStore
  • Volunteer as part of a group
  • Volunteer as part of a special event
Are Habitat homes free?

No, Habitat for Humanity is not a “hand-out” program. Habitat homes are sold to qualified homeowners at no profit, with a zero interest loan from Habitat. Homeowners pay an affordable monthly mortgage payment, not exceeding 30% of the household income. In addition, each homeowner must complete sweat equity hours by volunteering their time to work on their home and the homes of their Habitat neighbors.

Did Jimmy Carter start Habitat?

In March 1984, President and Mrs. Carter worked with Habitat in Americus, Georgia. This led up to their long-term involvement with us. They quickly realized that our mission closely aligned with their values, and a partnership was formed. Just a few months later, in September of that same year, the Carters led a Habitat for Humanity work group to New York, serving 19 families in need of safe, affordable housing. That was the inaugural Carter Work Project, which is now a weeklong event taking place in a different location all over the world each year.

Who can apply for a Habitat for Humanity home?

Families in need of decent, affordable housing can apply for homeownership with Habitat for Humanity Vail Valley.

Habitat’s family selection committee selects homeowners based on three criteria:

  • The applicant’s level of need.
  • Their willingness to partner with Habitat.
  • Their ability to repay a mortgage through an affordable payment plan.

As part of their willingness to partner, Habitat’s homebuyers invest hundreds of hours of their own labor, called sweat equity, working alongside volunteers and other Habitat homeowners.

Habitat for Humanity follows a nondiscriminatory policy of family selection. Neither race nor religion is a factor in choosing Habitat’s homeowners.

What are the specifications of a typical Habitat home?

A Habitat home is a simple, decent, affordable home. Most homes being built by our affiliate at this time are duplexes. Habitat homes are well built, low maintenance homes containing the basics but not a lot of extras. Our current homes are energy efficient, lowering the utility costs for the families. General policy mandates that Habitat homes meet the following square footage: 900 sq ft for 2 bedroom homes; 1070 sq ft for 3 bedroom homes; 1230 sq ft for 4 bedroom homes.

How does Habitat determine the number of bedrooms?

Generally the size of unit being built will be determined according to the family selected. Habitat assumes two children of the same gender per bedroom. Therefore, a family of four (two adults, two daughters) would qualify for a two bedroom. A family of four (two adults, one son and one daughter) would qualify for a three bedroom unit.

Can a Habitat homeowner sell their home?

Yes, homeowners can sell their Habitat home at any time. However, Habitat for Humanity receives first right of refusal, so the home can continue to serve the program. There are often restrictions on resale value and/or permanent affordability covenants. There is also a profit sharing clause that requires that any profit made from the re-sale of a Habitat home within 20 years of purchase must be shared with Habitat.

Is there a real need for affordable housing in the Vail Valley?

Yes. The need for affordable housing in Colorado is high and even greater in our mountain resort areas. Studies have shown that median home prices are rising much faster in Colorado than wages, creating a shortfall of home ownership opportunities in the state, especially in the Western Slope, and the mountain resort areas. Studies have also shown that affordable housing is vital to the economic health of a community and just as much a part of infrastructure development as building adequate roads, for example. Everyone deserves a fair chance at housing. Additionally, workers essential to the health of a community – teachers, firefighters, law enforcement personnel, emergency workers, retail workers, etc. – perform better in their job when they are able to live in the communities in which they work, not to mention what the stability does to improve their children’s scholastic performance. By reducing commute times, communities contribute to economic vitality by reducing transportation infrastructure costs, pollution, and labor turnover rates. See the Colorado Blue Ribbon Panel on Housing for further information.

Still have questions about Habitat for Humanity Vail Valley?

We would love to hear from you:

Habitat for Humanity Vail Valley
Post Office Box 4149
Avon, CO 81620
Phone: 970.748.6718

Email: info@habitatvailvalley.org
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