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Habitat for Humanity of Tuolumne County

Habitat homeowners are more likely to move up in their careers, further their education and become leaders in the community, than if they continue to pay too-high rents for substandard housing, living paycheck to paycheck.

Habitat for Humanity of Tuolumne County is committed to guiding homebuyers to become stable, self-reliant and successful homeowners. We accomplish this by thoroughly vetting applicants; and by providing education classes and continuous support during the application, loan and building processes.

Economic opportunity begins with the ability to live and work in a vibrant community, with access to safe, decent housing. According to a 2016 study conducted by Sonora Regional Medical Center, the median income in Tuolumne County is $54,000 and in Tuolumne County, 29 percent of renters spend over 50 percent of their income on rent.

Habitat homebuyers pay less on their mortgages than they previously did on rent.

The families who purchase Habitat homes earn 40 to 60 percent of the county’s median income and are considered extremely low to low income by the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development standards. Their children often qualify for the federal free and reduced school lunch program.

To be selected to be a Habitat homebuyer, families must live in unsafe, substandard or extremely overcrowded conditions. Homebuyers must also be willing to take financial education classes taught by Habitat and eHome America, which is counted toward their required 300 hours of “sweat equity.” They must pay off all medical debt before qualifying for a loan and must not have anything in collections to qualify.

“Sweat Equity”

“Sweat Equity” refers to the hands-on involvement of Habitat homebuyers in the work necessary to build their house. A family must commit to complete 300 hours of “sweat equity.” Friends and others can contribute up to 100 of these hours on their behalf.

It is considered part of the down-payment of their house.

The benefits include hands-on education on the workings of a home and a sense of pride and ownership in the home you help build. It also builds skills necessary to maintain their new home.

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