Own a Home

Mission Statement

How the Program Works

Where We Serve

Applicant Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take from the time I apply for a home until I close and move in?

The application/selection process can take 3 to 6 months and after that it may take another 6 months to a year before you will be ready to buy your home and move in.  The timing mostly depends on how long it takes you to complete the sweat equity requirement and attend our homeownership and financial management classes.  Also, our program relies on sponsors, donations, and volunteers to help construct our homes, which can impact the timing.

What is the sweat equity requirement?

Each family is required to invest 300 hours of working on their future home or the homes of other Habitat families or volunteering at the Habitat ReStore or in the office.  Families are supervised by Habitat’s trained site staff and work side-by-side with other volunteers.

When do I perform the sweat equity?

You may begin the sweat equity after you have been chosen as a partner family by the Family Selection Committee and Board of Directors.  The 300 hours must be completed before you can move into your new Habitat home.

Can friends and other groups help me meet the 300 hours of sweat equity?

No.  Sweat equity must be completed by members (18 years or older) of the family who will be living in the home.  It helps families develop a sense of pride in homeownership and learn important building and home maintenance skills.  In addition, sweat equity provides an opportunity for interaction with other partner families, Habitat staff, and volunteers.

Can I choose where I want my house to be? Can I switch to another Habitat home after I am selected?

No.  The Family Selection Committee and Board of Directors choose families for a particular house based on your family’s size and the availability of homes at the time when you are selected as a partner family.

Can I rent out or sublet my Habitat house?

No.  Habitat requires that you live in your home.  You cannot rent out the home or move out and let others live there instead. 

Can I run a day care or other business out of my home?

No.  Habitat homes are meant to be your primary residence and cannot be used for business purposes.

If I lose my job, will I lose my home?

Not necessarily.  We encourage you to communicate with us during periods of financial difficulty, and we will try to work together to find a solution.

I applied to Habitat in the past and my application was rejected. Can I apply again?

Absolutely.  We encourage you to reapply if your circumstances have changed.

I still have questions!

Don’t hesitate to contact the Director of Family Services Esther Powell with any further questions by email at estherpowell@habitatboston.org or by phone at 617-423-2223 ext. 21. Thank you for your interest in partnering with us!