Published 12:44 am Saturday, March 26, 2016

Volunteers work on a Habitat house on Opp Avenue earlier this fall. Finish work is ongoing at that house, and volunteers are needed this weekend.

Volunteers work on a Habitat house on Opp Avenue earlier this fall. Finish work is ongoing at that house, and volunteers are needed this weekend.

Orientation meetings are set in Andalusia, Opp, Florala

Habitat for Humanity is currently seeking new applicants for its program, officials announced Friday.

The organization recently dedicated its sixth house.

“With that dedication, we have now completed one house in Opp, one out in the county near the South Alabama Regional Airport, three in Andalusia and one in Florala,” said Kylan Lewis, chairman of the church relations committee. “The organization has chose to build our next home in Florala and is in the process of finalizing land title work for the Florala property, which was donated to Habitat, so that actual site work and construction may begin later in 2016.”

Lewis said the family that was chosen for the Florala house was selected in a process that began nearly three years ago.

Habitat families are required to earn 300 sweat equity hours before they occupy their home.

Each family must be able to provide these hours either directly or through friends, relatives, church family as a direct investment into their home.

They are also required to make a very small monetary down payment as well, Lewis said.

Lewis said that Habitat homes are modern, energy efficient, two or three bedroom dwellings with modern conveniences that are sold to qualifying families at cost.

Additionally, energy costs are usually less than half of what the owner has been paying previously.

Lewis said families interested in qualifying for a Habitat home must document sufficient income to pay a monthly mortgage, which is typically in the range of $300 to $350 per month, including insurance and taxes.

At the same time, Lewis said the income cannot be that they qualify for a commercial mortgage.

“Except for taxes and insurance, monthly mortgage payment is interest free, so that is goes to pay principal only,” he said.

Potential applications are required to attend an orientation meeting to complete necessary application forms.

Meetings will be held Thurs., April 7 at 6 p.m., at First Presbyterian Church on South Three Notch Street in Andalusia; on Sat., April 9, at 10 a.m., at First United Methodist Church in Opp on East Ida Avenue; and Thurs., April 14, at 6 p.m., at Florala’s Senior Citizen Center on Fourth Street.

Lewis said those wishing to apply, should bring records of monthly incomes and sources, as well as monthly expenses and any other documentation they feel will be beneficial to the process.

Present living accommodations will be taken into consideration. A background check will also be required after all other requirements are met.

For more info, call Lewis at 343-2299 or Dale Pancake at 222-9861.