Frequently Asked Questions
Does Habitat give away homes?
Habitat homes are not given away. Qualifying families purchase their homes with up to a 30-year, zero-interest mortgage.
Who does Habitat serve?
Habitat is the only nonprofit in Kent and Eastern Ottawa Counties serving families who earn 30%-60% of the area median income (approximately $30,000 per year) based on income guidelines for a family of four.
How many families has Habitat Kent helped?
Since July 6, 1983, we have helped over 600 families turn their dreams of homeownership into reality and have lifted over 1,500 children out of substandard housing.
Does Habitat partner with families long-term?
Yes, we are committed to the long-term sustainability of families, their economic success and the neighborhoods where they live. We do not walk away when a family moves into their Habitat home; we walk alongside them all the way through their final mortgage payment. Because of this partnership we have a 94% success rate working with our Habitat families.
How Does Habitat ensure racial justice?
In spirit of partnership, Habitat Kent is intentionally focused on eliminating racism and working to ensure that all people, regardless of their race, have the resources and opportunities they need to reach their full potential. We will keep this focus on racial justice while revitalizing neighborhoods in the greater Grand Rapids area in partnership with the Habitat Board of Directors, homebuyers, donors, volunteers and staff.
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How many people volunteer with Habitat Kent?
Last year 9,222 volunteers worked on construction sites, in our two ReStore locations, in our office and in our warehouse. That’s 52,387 volunteer hours!
How does Habitat Kent support our local education system?
Nearly 30 homes have been built by over 500 students from Grand Rapids Public Schools, GRCC M-TEC, Kent ISD, Wyoming, East Grand Rapids, Rockford, Forest Hills Public Schools and YouthBuild Grand Rapids. These students learned cutting-edge building science firsthand while giving back to their community and working alongside a Habitat partner family.
Are Habitat homes LEED-certified?
Nearly 100 homes (and every home since 2007) have been LEED certified, making Habitat Kent one of the largest green builders in the nation. LEED certification means a warm, safe, healthy home and saves our families hundreds of dollars every year on energy bills. For families living near the poverty line, these savings each month eliminate the decision between food and heat.
What is Habitat ReStore?
Habitat for Humanity ReStore sells new and gently-used building materials and home improvement products to the public at discounted prices. Proceeds help Habitat Kent fund the construction of even more Habitat homes. Both Kent County ReStores are open to the public: everyone is encouraged to donate, shop and volunteer.
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How much has ReStore diverted from the landfill?
Since opening in its first Kent County ReStore in 2004, our ReStores have diverted 7.5 million pounds (3,750 tons) of building materials from landfills.
What economic impact does Habitat have in the community?
According to the National Association of Home Builders, the estimated one-year economic impact of building 30 Habitat homes includes:
- $2.6 million in local income
- $250,000 in taxes and other revenue for local governments
- 44 local jobs
How does Habitat Kent compare to other Habitat affiliates?
Habitat Kent is Michigan's top producing Habitat affiliate.
What has Habitat Kent been recognized for?
- Since 2007, every new home built by Habitat Kent has been LEED certified
- Habitat Kent was named Michigan’s "Affiliate of the Year" in 2007
- As of October 2015 138 TOTAL LEED Homes Built: This number includes 1 LEED v4 GOLD home at 730 Oakland, 72 Energy Star Certified homes, and 17 Indoor Air Plus Certified Homes, Our average HERS for new homes in 2015 so far is 52.7 and our average monthly energy cost for new builds is estimated at $112.18/month.
- U.S. Green Building Council member since 2008
- USGBC awarded Habitat Kent for “Outstanding Commitment to LEED for Homes”
- Habitat Kent is an "Approved Environmental Group" by 1% for the Planet
- Built first LEED Gold Version 4 standards from the U.S. Green Building Council, or USGBC in Michigan and Midwest
- 2015 Nomination for West Michigan Business Forum Sustainable Business of the Year Award
- "Approved Environmental Group" by 1% for the Planet
- 2015 Better Business Bureau Torch Award Finalist
- Selected affiliate to take part of the Habitat International neighborhood revitalization initiative
- Michigan Affiliate of the Year (2007, 2014)
- Habitat for Humanity International 2013 Affiliates of Distinction Honorable Mention
- 2013 EPIC Non-profit of the Year
- Gerald R. Ford Job Corps Center 2013 Work Based Learning Center Site of the Year
- Campus Compact award for partnership with Grand Rapids Community College
- Finalist for the Good Neighbor Award through the Neighborhood Business Awards
- The State of Michigan Disability Council awarded Habitat Kent the "Corrie Bair Inclusive Communities Award for Housing" for building homes with “ZeroStep” entry
- Habitat Kent received the award of "Deal of the Year" by Grand Rapids Business Journal
- Sam Mompongo Award of $1 million in tithe contributions
- Completed neighborhood revitalization Building Blocks Campaign of $5 million that served 200 families in two years.
- Served more than 600 families in Kent County
- Neighborhood Business Awards 2015 Best District Promotion (Granville Avenue Neighborhood promotion funded and support by Habitat Kent neighborhood revitalization)
- Veteran Non-Profit of the Year and Non-Profit of the Year award from the "2015 WGVU I Have Made a Difference Awards”
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