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Effingham Magazine

Habitat for Humanity of Effingham County Now Accepting Applications for Prospective Homeowners

Habitat for Humanity of Effingham County Now Accepting Applications for Prospective Homeowners


Buying a home is a memorable milestone for many people because of the benefits it provides. There are the cosmetic aspects like painting a child’s room in his or her favorite color, being able to hang photos on the wall or planting a garden. There’s also the financial advantages of building equity and generational wealth and stable mortgage payments rather than increasing rent. The biggest rewards come from the stability and security of having a place to call home.

A study by Habitat for Humanity of Georgia showed that 74% of Habitat homeowners were able to save more money for emergencies, college funds and retirement. They are also spending more time with their families and feeling optimistic about the future.

More than 20 local families have found a pathway to homeownership through Habitat for Humanity of Effingham County since the affiliate was incorporated in 1995. Here’s what some of them have had to say:

“I’m thankful for Habitat being able to provide for our community for younger generations that are striving to have a home. It’s harder in today’s economy to be a homeowner, but with Habitat anything’s possible,” says Brittney Roper, Habitat homeowner since 2018.

“For someone to say ‘Hey, you don’t have to pack up and move again,’ you can’t put a price on that,” says Lauren Alvarado, Habitat homeowner since 2017.

“You’re not only doing it because it’s yours; you’re also helping the community,” April says. “It’s a great feeling to know that you can look back in 15-20 years and know that you built this house,” says April Wise, Habitat homeowner since 2023.

Applications are now open for families to partner with Habitat for Humanity and utilize its unique pathway to homeownership. Part of what makes the Habitat journey to homeownership special is the emphasis on “sweat equity,” where future homeowners complete at least 250 hours of volunteer work on the build site or at the ReStore. 

Applicants must have lived or worked in Effingham County for at least one year and be employed for at least one year at the same job. They must demonstrate a need for housing; examples of this include living in overcrowded or unhealthy housing and/or spending more than 30% of their monthly gross income on rent. Income must be no more than 80% of Effingham County’s median income: for a family of four, the maximum income is $52,980. 

How to Apply
Complete the online application at and upload the following documents:

•               Copies of last three months pay stubs for each applicant (also for anyone 18 or older earning income, who will live in the home)

•               Copies of the last two months bank statements of each applicant

•               Copies of the last two years of completed and signed tax returns & W2’s of each    applicant

•               Copies of last 12 months of utility bills, such as Georgia Power and water bills

•               Copies of a driver’s license or state identification card for each applicant

•               Copies of social security cards for each family member/resident

•               Copy of DD-214 form (if applicable)

•               Copies of divorce decree/separation papers (if applicable)

•               Verification of SSI/Disability for all applicable household members (if applicable)

•               Court-ordered child support or alimony income (if applicable)

After completing the application, contact the Habitat for Humanity office at (912) 826-6433 to set up an appointment with CEO Jimmy Rutland and submit an application fee of $50 per applicant.

“We strive to make homeownership attainable for our partner families,” says Rutland. “We’re happy to guide families through the application process and help them achieve their dreams.”

Visit to sign up for volunteer shifts, make donations or to keep up with the progress on their current projects.