Habitat for Humanity: Fact Vs. Myth

myth Habitat for Humanity gives houses away to poor people.


Habitat for Humanity offers a homeownership opportunity to families unable to obtain conventional house financing?generally, those whose income is 30 to 50 percent of the area's median income. In most cases, prospective Habitat homeowner families make a $500 down payment and contribute 300 to 500 hours of "sweat equity" on the construction of their home or someone else's home. Because Habitat houses are built using donations of land, material and labor, mortgage payments are kept affordable.

myth Habitat houses reduce property values in a neighborhood.


Low-cost housing studies in the United States and Canada show affordable housing has no adverse effect on other neighborhood property values. In fact, Habitat houses have increased property values and local government tax income.

myth Only African Americans get Habitat for Humanity homes.


Habitat builds houses in partnership with those in need?regardless of race, religion or any other difference?who meet three criteria: need; ability to repay the no-interest, no-profit mortgage; and a willingness to partner with Habitat. According to the latest available statistics (through 1997), 33 percent of Habitat homeowners are caucasian; 67 percent are people of color.

myth Habitat for Humanity International dictates policy and practices for every local Habitat organization.


Habitat operates through locally governed affiliates with a strong emphasis on grassroots organizations and local autonomy. Habitat affiliates are independent, nonprofit organizations that operate within specific service areas in a covenant relationship with Habitat for Humanity International.

myth Habitat homeowners are on welfare.


While some Habitat homeowners receive Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC), many more are working people. Typically their annual income is less than half the local median income in their community.

myth You have to be Christian to become a Habitat homeowner.


Habitat for Humanity is a Christian organization. However, homeowners are chosen without regard to race, religion or ethnic group, in keeping with U.S. law and with Habitat's abiding belief that God's love extends to everyone. Habitat also welcomes volunteers from all faiths, or no faith, who actively embrace Habitat's goal of eliminating poverty housing from the world.

myth Habitat for Humanity is an arm of the government.

Habitat is an ecumenical Christian housing organization. It is neither an arm of the government nor an arm of any church or denomination. It does not accept government funds for the construction of new houses or for the renovation or repair of existing houses. Habitat does accept government assistance for the acquisition of land or houses in need of rehabilitation. Habitat also accepts government help for streets, utilities and administrative expenses, as long as the funds carry no obligations that would limit Habitat's ability to proclaim its Christian witness.

myth Habitat for Humanity was founded by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter.


Habitat was started in 1976 in Americus, Georgia by Millard Fuller along with his wife Linda. President Carter and his wife Rosalynn (whose home is eight miles from Americus, in Plains, Georgia) have been longtime Habitat supporters and volunteers who help bring national attention to the organization's house-building work. Each year, they lead the Jimmy Carter Work Project to help build houses and raise awareness of the need for affordable housing.



How can I get more information about my local Habitat organization?


For additional information, see the other sections of this Web site, see our contact information page, or write or phone at:

Habitat for Humanity of Lumpkin County
P.O. Box 1002
Dahlonega, GA 30533, USA

Ways to Get Involved



Lumpkin County Habitat for Humanity is a local affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, a nonprofit, ecumenical Christianhousing ministry.


We seek to eliminate substandard housing. We are committed to helping local, low-income families finance and construct their own affordable homes.


Partnering and Faith!

Churches are essential partners, supporting the ministry of Habitat for Humanity and grounding our work in the gospel message.

Lumpkin County Churches... We invite you to connect with the Lumpkin County HFH affiliate today and help us put an end to poverty housing in Lumpkin County!

For more information about how your church or organization can partner with Habitat, contact: