Habitat for Humanity provides a unique opportunity for hardworking families to help build and buy their own homes. We work with WSHFC approved lenders to provide our homebuyers with an affordable mortgage based off their income so that the monthly mortgage payment (which includes property taxes, interest, association dues, homeowner’s insurance and association fees, if applicable) is no more than 35% of the homeowner’s total monthly income at the time of sale. If the homebuyer cannot afford to pay the full price of the home, Habitat for Humanity helps the homebuyer find Down Payment Assistance and provides subsidy financing for the remaining amount.
Habitat for Humanity Seattle-King County does not discriminate because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, sexual orientation, age, gender identity, or national origin.
If you are an applicant with a disability and need accommodations to access any of our services, please contact the Homeowner Services Department at 206.866.7618
How to Apply
Overview: Applying to our homeownership program will take time. It can take 3-4 months to complete the application process. However, there are things that you can do to speed up the process such as turning in your application materials as soon as possible and turning application in completed so we don’t have to ask for revisions. Additionally, after you complete the application and are approved into the program, it takes another 6-12 months before you can move into your house due to the time it takes to complete the 250 hours of sweat equity and the time it takes to build a home if you are buying a new construction house. Below we outline the different phases of the application process.
Step 1 – Intake Form: If you are interested in applying for the homeownership program after reading the qualifying criteria, complete the intake form on this page. This information is sent to our Homeowner Services Department, who will invite you to an upcoming information meeting.
Step 2 – Information Meeting: Register for an information meeting. This meeting is required for all applicants. At this meeting, you will learn more about the program and receive a pre-application to fill out. The pre-application is not the full application. We use it to determine if you are initially qualified by pulling a background check, sex offender registry check, and credit report. You cannot get a pre-application without attending an information meeting.
Step 3 – Second Orientation: After we process your pre-application, you will be invited to a second orientation if you qualify. If you do not pass the pre-application phase you will get a letter in the mail explaining why. At the second orientation, we will go more in depth into the program and you will receive the full application.
Step 4 – Underwriting: Once you turn in the full application, it is reviewed and sent through underwriting to establish your affordability. If you pass this phase, you will be invited to a homebuyer interview.
Step 5 – Homebuyer Interview: The homebuyer interview is given by 2-3 Habitat volunteers. We ask that you bring everyone who will be living in the home if possible. The interview is meant to get to know our applicants better and make sure they understand the program. It is also a chance for the applicants to ask questions about the program. After the interview, we will go over your affordability documents that you will take with you to a lender to get pre-qualified for a mortgage.
Step 6 – Pre-Qualification: Habitat for Humanity Seattle-King County is not a lending service; you will have to find your own lender. You will be asked to get pre-qualified for a mortgage from a Washington State Housing Finance Commission approved lender.
Step 7 – Final Approval: Once you are pre-qualified from a lender, your application will go to our Senior Leadership Team for final approval. If you are approved, you will be notified by your interviewers from Step 5 that you have been welcomed into the program.
Please sign up below to be informed of future homeownership opportunities.
Family Selection Criteria
Habitat for Humanity of Seattle-King County believes and insists on nondiscriminatory family selection criteria for all homeowner applicants. Homebuyers applying to Habitat for Humanity of Seattle-King County must meet the following criteria:
Demonstrate a need for adequate and affordable housing:
Applicant must be a first time homebuyer.
ONE of the following must be TRUE:
1. The applicant is “cost burdened” (defined as spending more than 30% of their gross income for housing).
2. The applicant is living in overcrowded, run-down, defective, or unsafe housing.
3. The applicant is living in subsidized housing or a temporary housing situation (ex: Section 8).
Demonstrate ability to pay:
An applicant’s gross income must be less than 60% of King County’s median income based on family size (50% for some areas). The average monthly payment for a Habitat for Humanity house is $900 – $1300.
Monthly backend debt (including card or credit card payments) must be no more than 43% of an applicant’s monthly income.
Applicants must have a minimum credit score of at least 620 (640 for buyback homes) and their credit report must be clear of liens and judgments. Any bankruptcies must be discharged at least 4 years ago.
2020 Income Guidelines
|Family Size||Minimum Income||Maximum Income Allowed|
Applicant must live or work in King County.
Applicant must be a permanent legal resident of the United States at the time of application.
Willingness to Partner
Sweat Equity: An applicant must be willing to complete 250 hours of sweat equity per household. Sweat Equity is Habitat’s term for the labor that Habitat homeowners put into building their houses and the houses of their neighbors.
Households are required to complete at least 250 hours of sweat equity. They can complete their hours on our construction sites, in our stores, through homeowner education classes, or by working in our office. We can accommodate individuals with disabilities on a case by case basis.
New home sites aquired for future Habitat families in 2019
Homes repaired in 2019
People took a homeowner education class in 2019
Before making a phone call or sending an e-mail, take a look at some of the common questions people have about our homeownership program. Learn more>>
If you or someone you know is a veteran and is interested in learning more about our homeownership program, register below to attend our next information meeting. Learn more>>
Education & Resources
Whether you’re a Habitat homeowner, home repair applicant, or a member of the community looking for help, we’re here for you. Click through for local housing and family resources. Learn more>>
Meet Habitat Homeowners
Habitat has housed hundreds of families over our 30 year history in Seattle–King County. Read some of our homeowner stories and see pictures of completed homes around the area. Learn more>>