DANVILLE — Habitat for Humanity of Danville officials are holding an application drive for people who are interested in owning a home built by the organization.
"We've still got folks on the waiting list for our 2012 builds," Executive Director John Graves said. "But we're looking for folks for 2013 and beyond."
People can apply one of two ways.
Starting today, they can pick up an application at the Habitat ReStore, 121 N. Walnut St. ReStore hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays.
Applicants must mail in the application and copies of their most recent W2 form and a list of their monthly expenses for housing, utilities, vehicles, etc. to the address on the application form.
People can also apply in person at a one-day event, which will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Jan. 14 in the second-floor conference room at the Danville Public Library, 319 N. Vermilion St. They must bring their proof of income and a list of their monthly expenses with them.
Graves encouraged people to attend, if possible.
"We did this a couple of years ago, and it worked very well," he said, adding 22 people applied and seven were approved. In the past, "people have missed this or filled that part out wrong. Our board members will be there to work with them to make sure everything gets filled out properly."
To qualify, people must be in a "substandard" living situation.
"It's unsafe, it's unsanitary or overcrowded," Graves said.
They also must have a job and be able to make a $1,000 down payment and a mortgage payment of about $450 a month, which covers property taxes and insurance.
"We're not looking for people with no income," Graves said, adding Habitat aims to "give people a hand up, not a handout. A lot of people (who qualify) are unskilled laborers. They're not making a lot of money, but they're working really hard to put a roof over their head and provide for their family."
People also must put in a certain number of "sweat equity" hours on their home build, another Habitat project or at the ReStore. Single parents must put in 300 hours, and members of two-parent households must put in 350 hours before they can move into their home.
"They have plenty of opportunity to get in their hours," Graves said, adding 80 percent of homeowners have ended up putting in 300 or 350 hours.
And by law, applicants cannot have a judgment filed against them, Graves said.
This year, Habitat officials hope to build three houses. They will be the organization's 49th, 50th and 51st projects in the Danville area.
Graves said he's still lining up funding for the third project and looking for a few more community partners to help fund the second. For that project, the organization hopes to partner with 50 churches, businesses, organizations and individuals who are willing to donate $1,000 apiece.
Graves said officials will break ground on the first project later this spring, depending on the weather.