Home Purchase Program

Habitat McHenry County strives to make homeownership affordable for more families. We provide a hand up, not a hand-out. Meaning we’re in active partnership with homebuyers accepted into our program.

Home Ownership

Habitat for Humanity is a home ownership program empowering families to build a new life for themselves through the stability and security of owning their own home. Habitat homes are not given away but are sold to families who qualify and are willing to make a down payment, put in sweat equity labor, and can make a monthly mortgage payment. Habitat homes are affordable because Habitat does not make a profit on construction, the families pay an affordable mortgage and the homes are built with volunteers. 

We consider a “house built to code” as the lowest quality level of housing.  Although volunteers are engaged to help us build a Habitat home, we exceed housing codes and all homes are inspected and appraised at market value.

We are not currently accepting applications for the Homeownership Program

Applicants will submit their initial application and required paperwork during our open application period.  We accept applications based on our home build plan.

To be added to our Interest List please click below to add your contact information and you will be notified prior to the open application acceptance window.

 Please review qualifications for partner families below.  The process can take time, but the reward is invaluable. 

We are available to answer questions through phone or email!

815-759-9002 or info@habitatmchenry.org

Becoming a Habitat Homeowner

Required Qualifications for Homeownership Applicants

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

1. 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 30% of income
  • Size is inadequate for the present or anticipated residents
  • Other factors demonstrating a need for the type of housing Habitat can provide, that goes beyond a personal desire to own a home.

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

2. Demonstrated Ability to Pay

  • Gross household income must be between 30% – 80% of the median income for the McHenry County area at the time of application. (see chart below.)
  • A minimum of one (1) year history of stable income and employment with no gaps.
  • An acceptable credit history, which includes a good record of paying rent and utilities.
  • Bankruptcies must have been discharged for four years.
  • A $1000.00 down payment on the house.
  • Ability to afford anticipated mortgage payments. Monthly payments for debt cannot exceed 43% of gross monthly income.
  • Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent resident aliens.

2022 Income Guidelines (Source: HUD)

Family SizeMinimum Gross IncomeMaximum Gross Income

3. Willingness to Partner with Habitat

  • Applicant and all adults living in the home must be willing to contribute a minimum of 250 hours of sweat equity towards the building of Habitat homes, of which 100 hours must be completed on construction home builds. Sweat equity hours are volunteer hours at our ReStores or on home build sites.  
  • An additional 100 hours will be added to the family requirement for every person aged 16-18 living in the home.
  • Applicant must be willing to live in the communities in our build plan. 
  • Applicant must be willing to continue to partner with Habitat after their home is finished through on time mortgage payments, volunteerism, and home upkeep.
  • Applicant must be willing to attend required workshops for successful homeownership.
  • Applicant will have to pay a $25.00 Application Fee. This fee is non-refundable and covers the costs associated with processing the application.

Applicants will not be approved if they;

  1. Can qualify for conventional financing without exceeding 30% of net monthly income
  2. Have owned a home within the last three (3) years
  3. Have a bankruptcy that has not cleared four (4) years since discharge date
  4. Have a foreclosure that has not cleared seven (7) years since the bank took the property

Habitat for Humanity of McHenry County is an equal opportunity housing provider. It considers every applicant without regard to race, religious preference, gender, handicap, family status or national origin.