Qualifying for Homeownership

Future homebuyers must meet the following criteria:

1.    Live and/or Work in Fluvanna County

If you do not live or work in Fluvanna County, you should contact the Habitat for Humanity in the county of Virginia that you currently live.

2.    Be in need better housing

Potential homebuyers may currently live in overcrowded conditions or in a home that is poorly built, unhealthy, or damaged. Or, they may be experiencing housing instability, or have rent payments that are not affordable.

3.    Willing to partner with Fluvanna Habitat

Habitat homebuyers must be willing to put in 100 hours of “sweat equity” per adult by participating in some aspect of the homebuilding process. Individuals with disabilities or otherwise unable to physically help in the homebuilding process are offered other volunteer opportunities to fulfill these requirements. Sweat equity hours include meetings or classes in personal finances, home maintenance, community conversations and other activities that help ensure long-term stability and success. Habitat’s path to homeownership is an important and in-depth process, requiring hard work, time, and dedication. This dedication helps to ensure the long-term success of Habitat homeowners.

4.    Be able to pay an affordable monthly mortgage

Because homebuyers purchase a home from Habitat, they must be able to demonstrate that they can pay a monthly mortgage payment. Unlike rent payments, monthly mortgage payments go towards full ownership of a home. We partner with individuals and families throughout the homebuyer process to mentor them in improving their overall financial health and developing appropriate repayment plans that will help them pay off existing debts. Habitat works with future homebuyers who may need to improve their credit scores.

5.    Pass a background check

Each adult applying for a Habitat home must pass both a criminal and sexual offender background check.

6.    Meet income requirements

Habitat targets families that fall in the annual income range of $32,982 and $56,000, which is 50%-80% of
Fluvanna County’s median income. We will work with all applicants individually.

What in my Credit Report would cause me to be disqualified from becoming a future homeowner with Fluvanna Habitat?

Fluvanna Habitat for Humanity must follow USDA and Habitat approved guidelines when approving future
homeowners. Per guidelines, we cannot approve a mortgage application if your credit report contains one
or more of the following:

  • A foreclosure completed within the last 5 years
  • An IRS tax lien or other tax liens if no payment arrangements have been made
  • Debts, collections, judgements or write offs if no payment arrangements been made
  • Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharged within the last 5 years
  • If you have not successfully completed required Chapter 13 requirements within the last 12 months


Additional Information on Credit Scores – and how we help our family partners/future homeowners

Fluvanna Habitat for Humanity has partnered with the USDA 502 program that pays Habitat back for all house expenses when a home is sold. That helps us with the funds needed to build our next home. Homeowners pay their monthly mortgage payment directly to USDA. To partner with Fluvanna Habitat and USDA, each homeowner must pre-qualify for the monthly mortgage they will be expected to pay. A credit score of 640 or higher is required. We are willing and able to work with families that want to increase their credit score. We utilize our financial education courses along with budget and financial counseling to help our future homeowners. Sometimes, this process takes a short time and sometimes it could take several years to accomplish depending on your individual financial situation. Once a future homeowner has reached the credit score goal, they qualify to purchase a Fluvanna Habitat home.


Additional Resources 

Fluvanna County Habitat for Humanity realizes that it cannot help all people in all situations.  Here are some links that you may find helpful if you realize you do not qualify for a Habitat house:

Fluvanna County Social Services

Virginia Department of Health

United Way Thomas Jefferson Area

United Way Quick Reference Resource Guide