Habitat for Humanity of Greater New Haven is an equal opportunity housing provider. Habitat considers applicants without regard to race, religious preference, gender, handicap, familial status or national origin. The application process consists of completion of the application form, credit check, sex offender check, an interview, and fourteen (14) hours of volunteer work.

Habitat’s acceptance guidelines are based on consideration of the following criteria:

Need for Housing

The applicant(s) must demonstrate that their current housing situation has one or more of the following characteristics:

  • Unsafe or very poor conditions or located in a particularly unsafe area;
  • Rent, or contribution currently paid towards rent, exceeds 35% of net income;
  • Size in inadequate for the present or anticipated residents;
  • Other facts demonstrating a need for the type of housing Habitat can provide, that goes beyond a personal desire to own a home.

Applicants will not be approved if they:

  • Qualify for conventional financing
  • Presently own real estate
  • Have owned real estate within the last three (3) years.

Eligible applicants are not disqualified because they may qualify for another subsidy program, governmental or charitable, or tax deferral.

Demonstrated Ability to Pay

  • Gross household income must be between 30% and 60% of the median income for the New Haven area at the time of application.
  • A two-year history of stable income and employment;
  • An acceptable credit history, which includes a good record of paying rent and utilities;
  • Bankruptcies must have been discharged for at least two (2) years;
  • Ability to cover closing costs and adjustments, which are about $4,500-$5,000, as well as a $600 down payment on the house;
  • Ability to afford anticipated mortgage payments, including property taxes and homeowners insurance;
  • Monthly payments for debt cannot exceed 40% of gross monthly income;
  • Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents.

Willingness to Partner with Habitat

  • Applicant must complete at least 400 hours of sweat equity towards the building of Habitat homes. Each primary applicant must complete a minimum of 100 hours, working at least 60 hours per month. Applicant must comply with all other sweat equity policies;
  • Applicant must be willing to live in a neighborhood in which Habitat is currently building;
  • Applicant must be willing to attend required workshops for success in homeownership.

Habitat reserves the right to waive or alter any of the foregoing criteria based upon the unique situation of the applicant.


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