Applying for a Home

The 3 criteria for becoming a Habitat Homeowner are needability to pay, and a willingness to partner.

This page outlines the details about our homeownership program. It includes application requirements, homeowner responsibilities, income guidelines, the location we build our homes, answers to frequently asked questions, and a pre-application form to determine your eligibility for the program. We recommend reviewing all the information carefully before completing the pre-application form.

If you are interested in information on the homes that are currently being built on Jericho Rd., please be aware that project is NOT associated with Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity. Our project will be located further down Jericho Rd., and construction has not started yet.

How are partner families selected?

A family selection committee selects homeowners based on their level of need, their willingness to become partners in the program, and their ability to repay the mortgage loan. The family selection committee follows the laws set by the Equal Housing Opportunity and every affiliate follows a nondiscriminatory policy of family selection that neither race nor religion is a factor in choosing the families who receive Habitat homes.

Is owning a Habitat home right for you?

Habitat for Humanity provides a hand up, not a hand out, to hard-working families with low incomes who are willing to partner with Habitat as homeowners. Our program is not a quick fix. If you qualify, it can take up to 3 years to complete the program before moving into a home.

What is required to apply for a Habitat home?

  • Submit required information and documentation in a timely manner
  • Have a need for affordable housing due to unsafe living conditions, overcrowding, accessibility issues, or rent higher than 30% of income
  • Be citizens or legal residents of the U.S.
  • Stable and consistent source of income 
  • Applicants must not currently have a mortgage in their name 
  • Applicants must live in Illinois and live or work within the territory we build in Southern Kane County or Kendall County for at least one year to apply. (map of territory below)
  • Ability to pay a mortgage by earning a stable income that falls within Habitat’s income guidelines (guideline below)
  • Have good credit with consistent payment history
  • Not have bankruptcies in the past 3 years

Are you willing to partner with Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity?

  • Willing to enter into a 30-year partnership with Fox Valley Habitat and adhere to covenant restrictions in all mortgage documents
  • Invest 350-500 “sweat equity” hours into building own home, and other future homeowner’s homes
  • Participate in a 9-week financial training course 
  • Maintain a good credit rating
  • Pay for down payment and closing costs
  • Willing to share your story, speak with the media and churches, help at fundraising events, and share pictures of family on social media and FVHH website

What are homeowners responsible for?

  • Mortgage, insurance on home, and real estate taxes 
  • All Utilities: Water, sewer, gas, electric, garbage, cable/internet
  • All repairs to the home and appliances
  • Responsible for maintaining the outside of home, grass/shrubs/trees, & snow removal
  • May not rent their homes to encourage safer, owner-occupied neighborhoods 
  • Required to keep homes maintained and in good condition in accordance with the Habitat covenant

Income Guidelines

30% - 80% ~ $109,400.00
Household income based on the number of people living in the household:
1 Person2 People3 People4 People5 People6 People7 People8 People
Income range are from HUD and change annually:
Family SizeHourlyWeeklyAnnual
1 Person$11.15$445.96$23,190.00Minimum
2 People$12.74$509.42$26,490.00Minimum
3 People$14.32$572.88$29,790.00Minimum
4 People$15.91$636.35$33,090.00Minimum
5 People$17.19$687.69$35,760.00Minimum
6 People$18.46$738.46$38,400.00Minimum
7 People$19.73$789.23$41,040.00Minimum
8 People$21.00$840.00$43,680.00Minimum
  • If you have 2 or more incomes, add the 2 incomes to get a total for your family
  • If you receive other income, such as Social Security, documented child support (court ordered), disability, or retirement, please add to get a total income for your household size

Our Homes

We are currently accepting applications for our Habitat Green Freedom subdivision, as well as other prospective properties. It’s important to note that being selected does not automatically guarantee a home in the Green Freedom subdivision. We would also like to note that if selected, our program is not a quick fix and can take up to 3 years to complete the program before moving into a home.

If you are interested in information on the homes that are currently being built on Jericho Rd., please be aware that project is NOT associated with Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity. Our project will be located further down Jericho Rd., and construction has not started yet.

We build our homes within the territory of Southern Kane County or Kendall County, spanning from Route 38 South to Route 71, and from Route 59 West to Somonauk Road (map below). Interested applicants must live in Illinois and live or work within the territory we build for at least one year to apply. 

Frequently Asked Questions

No. Habitat for Humanity doesn’t simply give away houses, they offer a path to affordable homeownership through a combination of community support, volunteer labor, and low-cost financing.

Here’s how it generally works:

  1. Application Process: Families or individuals in need of housing apply to their local Habitat for Humanity affiliate. These applicants are often low-income individuals or families who would not qualify for traditional mortgages. 
  2. Selection Process: Habitat evaluates these applications based on their level of need, willingness to partner, and ability to pay a no-profit, low interest mortgage. They also consider whether the applicant can put in “sweat equity.”
  3. Sweat Equity: Along with a minimal down payment, approved applicants contribute “sweat equity” by working on Habitat projects, including the construction of their own home and the homes of others. This involvement helps keep costs down and fosters a sense of ownership and community.
  4. Affordable Mortgage: Once the house is built or renovated, the family or individual receives an affordable mortgage provided by Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity. These mortgages have low interest, and the monthly payments go back into funding more Habitat projects.

Habitat for Humanity is not an immediate solution or a “quick fix” and does not provide emergency assistance. If you are accepted into our program, it can take 2 years or more to complete the program before moving into a home.

The first phase of the process begins with completing a pre-application.

Our program process entails 4 different stages:

  • First, pre-applications are submitted online and reviewed.
  • If the pre-application meets our qualifications, we will send you a full application to fill out and submit within 30 days of receiving. 
  • Once we receive your application, it will be thoroughly reviewed (with a response sent to you within 30 days)
  • If you are accepted into the program, our Family Support Team will conduct a final review and approved applicants will receive a notice of approval.

The timeline for moving into a Habitat home can vary depending on several factors, including the specific circumstances of the homeowner, the availability of housing units, the construction schedule, and the policies of the Fox Valley Habitat affiliate. Here is a general overview of the typical timeline:

  1. Application and Selection Process: Prospective homeowners must submit an application, provide documentation, undergo interviews, and meet eligibility criteria. The Family Support Team then reviews applications and selects homeowners based on established criteria.
  2. Home Construction or Renovation: Once selected, Habitat homeowners may need to wait for their home to be constructed or renovated. Fox Valley Habitat relies on volunteers, donations, and community partnerships to build homes, so the construction timeline can vary depending on factors such as weather, volunteer availability, and funding.
  3. Sweat Equity and Homeownership Education: During the construction phase, Habitat homeowners are required to complete sweat equity hours by volunteering on a Fox valley Habitat construction site or participating in other approved activities. They also need to attend homeownership education classes to prepare for the responsibilities of homeownership.
  4. Mortgage Approval and Closing: Habitat homeownership involves securing a low interest mortgage from Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity. The mortgage approval process can take several weeks to complete, including income verification, credit checks, and documentation review. Once approved, homeowners attend a closing meeting to sign the necessary paperwork and finalize the purchase of their home.
  5. Move-In: After closing on the home, Habitat homeowners can typically move in once any remaining construction or renovation work is completed, utilities are connected, and final inspections are passed. This usually occurs within a few weeks to a couple of months after closing, depending on the specific circumstances.


Overall, the process of moving into a Habitat for Humanity home can take anywhere from several months up to 3 years. It’s essential for prospective homeowners to stay in close communication with their Habitat affiliate and follow the necessary steps to progress through the homeownership process efficiently.

Construction expenses for Habitat homes are lowered by volunteer labor, contributions from home sponsors, and tax-deductible monetary and material donations from individuals and organizations. This significantly reduces the overall cost making Habitat homes more accessible and affordable.

Habitat first-time homebuyer mortgages are set to no more than 30% of the applicants gross income at the time of purchase. 

Yes. Applicant(s) must be a U.S. Citizen or a permanent resident.

  • Completed homeowner application 
  • Copy of driver’s license or state-issued photo ID from all applicants
  • Copy of current rental agreement or lease
  • Copy of bank statements for last 2 months
  • Copy of last 2 months of utilities, phone bill, etc.
  • Copies of paycheck stubs for past two months
  • Copies of W-2 forms and tax returns for for the last 2 years
  • Copy of Social Security and/or Disability benefits documents (if applicable)
  • Copy of alimony and/or child support documents (if applicable)
  • Copies of documents for any other regular income received (if applicable) 


Additional documents may apply. 

Yes. Applicants are eligible to apply 1 year from the denial date. Your denial letter will provide any specifics on criteria not met and we encourage applicants to utilize resources to improve their financial situation. 

Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity homeowners do not have the ability to select a specific location for their home. Fox Valley Habitat typically acquires land or properties based on availability, affordability, and our organization’s overall mission and goals. The specific location of Habitat homes is determined by our land acquisition process and any partnerships we may have with government agencies, developers, or other organizations.

However, we may be able to take into consideration the preferences or needs of homeowners when selecting building sites. For example, we may consider factors such as proximity to schools, public transportation, employment opportunities, or community amenities. Additionally, Fox Valley Habitat strives to build homes in safe, stable neighborhoods that offer opportunities for homeowners to thrive.

The location of Habitat homes is determined by a variety of factors, including land availability, affordability, family needs, and the mission of Fox Valley Habitat to provide safe, decent, and affordable housing for our partnering families.

At Habitat, sweat equity is a new homeowner investing in their home or one for another family. It’s not a form of payment, but an opportunity to work alongside volunteers to bring to life a family’s dream of owning a home.

Friends and family may also help a Habitat homebuyer by volunteering with Habitat and donating their hours towards fulfilling a portion of their sweat equity requirements.

Sweat equity provides meaningful interaction between homebuyers, Habitat volunteers and staff, community members and future neighbors. As families work on their own homes, they begin to develop a sense of pride. Habitat homebuyers invest their time and energy into their homes, and witness the work of others on their behalf. While assisting in the building of their homes, homebuyers gain an understanding of the construction of their home and and how to maintain it.

Yes. Habitat homes must be owner-occupied and cannot be rented out. If you choose to sell your home during the life of the loan, Fox Valley Habitat has a first right of refusal, and must be offered the opportunity to purchase the home. After a homeowner has fully paid off the mortgage, these restrictions are removed.

Starting the Application Process

Ready to take the first step? Just fill out our pre-application form below to get started. To make it easier to understand the application process, we have created a handy flowchart outlining each step.

Homeownership Pre-Application

The pre-application form is the first step in determining your eligibility for our homeownership program and is not the full application. If you are filling out the pre-application for the homes that are currently being built on Jericho Rd., please be aware that project is NOT associated with Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity. Our project will be located further down Jericho Rd., and construction has not started yet.

Applicant(s) Name(s):(Required)
Applicants are only those whose name(s) would be on the mortgage for the home.
Name (if second applicant)
Please refer to map above for area our territory covers.
You will receive a response to your pre-application through an email. Check your spam/junk folder if you do not see any emails from us.
Total yearly income for ALL members of the household. Income includes: work wages, social security, pensions, retirement income, disability, court ordered child support, etc.
Are you aware that our program is not a quick fix and can take up to 3 years to complete the program before moving into a home?(Required)
Are you aware of our sweat equity policy and willing to complete a minimum of 350 sweat equity hours through volunteering and financial education during your partnership?(Required)
Are you willing to partner with Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity, including a 30 year mortgage?(Required)
Willingness to partner consists of willing to enter into a 30-year partnership (mortgage) with Fox Valley Habitat and adhere to covenant restrictions in all mortgage documents.
Have either you or your co-applicant been consistently employed for 2 years, with at least 6 months at your current job?(Required)
Are you or your co-applicant receiving non-employment income from sources like social security, retirement, child support, disability, etc.?(Required)
Is your credit score currently 600 points or higher?(Required)
Do you have any unpaid judgments or collections?(Required)
Have you or your co-applicant filed for bankruptcy in the last 3 years?(Required)
Have you or your co-applicant had a property foreclosed upon in the past seven years?(Required)
Include minimum credit card payments, car payments, student loan payments and any other borrowed money payments for each month.
Are you and your co-applicant a U.S. citizen or permanent resident?(Required)
What's next?(Required)
An email will be sent to you within 5 business days after submitting the pre-application notifying you of your eligibility. This email will include important information on the next steps in the application process. Please check your spam/junk folder if you do not see any correspondences from us. If you do not have access to email, you will be contacted via phone or sent through the mail. If you have any questions while filling out the pre-application, please contact Debbi at: or 630-206-5031. Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity does not discriminate against any applicant based on race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, age, familial status, ancestry, unfavorable military discharge, marital status, receipt of governmental assistance or handicap. In addition, Fox Valley Habitat for Humanity does not discriminate based on handicapped status in the admission or access to, or treatment or employment in its federally assisted programs and activities.