Home Ownership

We empower through shelter. West Orange Habitat makes simple housing affordable for those who may not be able to otherwise achieve homeownership. Our homes are:

  • Simple: West Orange Habitat houses are modestly-sized. They are large enough for the homeowner family's needs, but small enough to keep construction and maintenance costs to a minimum.

  • Decent and Solidly Built: West Orange Habitat uses quality, locally-available building materials, and construction quality is prized.  Our house designs strive to reflect the local climate and culture.

  • Affordable: The use of the labor of volunteers and partner families, efficient building methods, modest house sizes, and no-interest loans structured for affordability make it possible for low-income families living in substandard conditions to purchase West Orange Habitat homes.

  • Accessible: West Orange Habitat’s commitment to build for people in need extends to those with disabilities. Whenever possible, our homes incorporate basic accessible design features, such as a zero-step entrance and wide passage doors and hallways. Houses built in partnership with families with disabilities include additional accessibility features.

In addition to making homeownership opportunities available to qualified applicant families, West Orange Habitat provides homeowner partners with both financial and home maintenance training -- and mentoring support -- to set them up for continuing success. 



You may qualify for homeownership if:

  • You have lived in West Orange County for at least the last 12 months

  • You have had the same job or source of verifiable income for at least the last 6 months

  • Your current housing is:

    • Inadequate: Lack of adequate housing may include problems with the present structure such as: water; electrical or sewage service systems; heating system; hazardous; poorly maintained (substandard); or failure to meet city property maintenance standards.

    • Overcrowded: Also taken into consideration are the make-up and size of your family compared to the number of bedrooms in your home.

    • Transitional: You are currently living with family members or a friend and you do not have your own home.

    • Government Subsidized: Housing programs such as Section 8, Low Rent Program.

    • Unaffordable: A percentage of your monthly income that you currently spend on housing is considered to determine need ("more than 40% of my monthly income goes towards rent").

Also, if you are unable to obtain adequate housing through other conventional means.


Ability to REPAY a no interest mortgage

You and your family will be considered if your total income is between 25% and 80% of the area median income for Orange County as set by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The income eligibility criteria varies based on family size and is updated annually. For 2017, the allowable range of total income is as follows:

  • Family of 2: $11,700 - $37,400

  • Family of 3: $13,150 - $42,050

  • Family of 4: $14,600 - $46,700

  • Family of 5: $15,775 - $50,450

  • Family of 6: $16,950 - $54,200

  • Family of 7: $18,125 - $57,950

A prospective homeowner partner must also be able to demonstrate credit-worthiness in accordance with West Orange Habitat requirements.


Willingness to Partner

If you are approved by West Orange Habitat as a prospective homeowner partner you must:

  • Be willing to live in the home provided by West Orange Habitat and timely pay an affordable, no-interest mortgage.

  • Be willing and able to contribute 300 to 400 "sweat equity" hours in the construction of your home (and/or your neighbors' homes) and successfully complete Homeowner Education Workshops provided by West Orange Habitat.



If you are interested in learning more about homeownership opportunities available through West Orange Habitat, please: (1) complete and submit the form below, and (2) attend our next quarterly community orientation. We will be distributing applications at the conclusion of the orientation, and ample opportunity will be allowed for all in attendance to ask questions about any aspect of the program that may be unclear to you. 

At this time no orientation dates have been set. Please check this website in mid year for schedule date for our next orientation.

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Homeowner Info