If you or someone you know is interested in applying to be a Milwaukee Habitat homeowner, please review our program guidelines.
Need for Affordable Housing
To qualify for a Habitat home or a rehab project you must be a first-time homebuyer with inadequate housing. Inadequate housing includes any of the following:
- Too expensive
- Too crowded
- Structural problems with water, electrical or sewage systems
If you are living in subsidized or transitional housing, such as Section 8, you may qualify.
Ability to Pay
In order to buy a Habitat home, you must demonstrate an ability to pay the monthly mortgage payment. Though your unique finances will vary, a typical mortgage payment is between $500 – $700. This includes property insurance and real estate taxes. When you pay your mortgage every month, that money is recycled to fund new homes and critical repair for future Habitat families.
Your income must fall within 25% to 80% of Milwaukee County’s median income for your family size (see chart below). We consider all sources of steady income including: alimony, child support (if you have at least three additional years to receive it, and it is consistent), pension, retirement, SSDI, SSI, Survivor’s benefits, and wages. Unemployment, financial aid, TANF, food stamps and W-2 are not considered income for qualification purposes.
2017 Annual Income Guidelines
All applicants must undergo a credit check. However, we try to evaluate potential partner families on their overall financial health, rather than just a number in your credit report. We may consider unpaid court judgments, and collections totaling less than $500, however, they must be paid prior to house completion. For clients that have filed bankruptcy, it has to be two years after discharge in order to apply.
Willingness to Partner: Sweat Equity
You may have noticed we use the word “partner” quite a bit. What does it mean to “partner”? When you join the Habitat homeownership program as a partner family, you will complete “sweat equity” instead of paying a down payment. This means you will contribute hundreds of hours of work in the construction of your home and the homes of your neighbors.
Sweat equity provides the opportunity to learn construction skills, get to know your neighbors and the community you will join once you move into your new home. Home maintenance and financial education classes will help you prepare for the unexpected and begin the transition from renting to the responsibilities of homeownership.
If you meet these qualifications and would like more information, the first step is to attend a Homeowner Orientation.
Please see our Calendar of Events for information on upcoming orientation sessions.
We are pledged to the letter and spirit of the U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the nation. We encourage and support an affirmative advertising and marketing program in which there are no barriers to obtaining housing because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin.