Habitat accepting applications

  • Apr. 6, 2011 6:00 a.m.

Families looking to apply for Castlegar’s Habitat for Humanity house can do so starting this week.

Forms will be available at local thrift shops, including St. David’s Thrift Store and the Treasure Shop, as well as area schools.

“Basically we’re looking for a family that would be unable to obtain a bank mortgage,” Judy Dallas of Habitat for Humanity said. “They should be living in a substandard housing situation. It will not usually be someone who is in subsidized housing already.”

Dallas said the only reason they would consider a family living in subsidized housing is if they were, for example, handicapped and couldn’t get up the stairs.

Habitat for Humanity prides themselves on being “a hand up, not a hand out.”

The family must pay 30 per cent of their monthly income towards the mortgage, which Habitat holds. To make it more affordable, Habitat doesn’t charge any interest.

“If you’re not working you’re not going to be able to pay a mortgage,” Dallas said, stating the family must be employed.

The family also has to be willing to work with Habitat for Humanity. Once selected, they will put in 500 hours working on the house.

“We are looking for a family. It can be a single mom or a single dad or a couple living together (with kids).”

Dallas said they’ll also be looking at the income level and how many kids are in the family.

The applications are due back by May 6, and the families will hear within a month whether they’re being considered or not.

Immediately, five or six families will be selected for two rounds of interviews.

“Then we’ll go over all our answers and compare them and the selection committee will present them to the Habitat board and they’ll choose,” Dallas explained. “If another family doesn’t get it and we build another house in Castlegar, they’re more than welcome to fill out another application form.”

The plot of land for the build was donated by the City of Castlegar and is located on 11th Avenue.

The West Kootenay affiliation of Habitat for Humanity started in 1996. Previous to the planned build in Castlegar, three homes were built in Nelson, including a duplex.

For more information about the applications, call 250-304-2490 or 250-304-1828, or visit habitatwk.ca.