You Can Own Your Own Home

Have you ever thought about owning your own home? Many people have, but they don’t believe achieving the American Dream of homeownership could ever be a possibility for them and their families. Maybe they are concerned about their credit score, or they don’t know how they can ever save the money for the down payment/closing costs* for a new home, or they simply don’t know where to start. If any of this sounds familiar, then Habitat for Humanity of Greater Chattanooga Area may be an option for you. We’re here to help families and single people with low-to-moderate incomes get the homeownership process started.

To qualify for our program you must have a need for housing, the ability to pay, and be willing to partner with Habitat.

How do families qualify? 

To select homeowners, we look at three things: 

1. Need for Housing

Applicants must have a housing need. Examples of housing need include: 

  • Low-income/high housing costs 
  • Unsafe dwelling 
  • Overcrowded conditions 
  • Homelessness 
  • Unsafe surroundings 
  • Home cannot accommodate the needs of a disabled household member 
  • Do not qualify for a traditional mortgage 

2. Ability to Pay

Applicants will buy their homes from Habitat for Humanity. They must have the ability to pay a 30 year, 0% interest rate mortgage. The mortgage payment includes principal, property taxes and homeowner’s insurance. 

To be considered for a Habitat for Humanity of Greater Chattanooga home, applicants must meet low-income guidelines based on family size. 


  • Must have had steady income in the United States for at least 24 months 
  • Must demonstrate ability to make regular payments for rent, utilities, etc. 
  • Must be a resident of Hamilton County for at least 12 months 
  • Must be able to make a down payment and monthly payments totaling $2,600 for closing costs. 
  • Cannot have been in bankruptcy in the past 24 months. 
  • Cannot have owned a home in the last 36 months 
  • Cannot have $2,000 or more in collections, charge offs or outstanding judgments on Credit Report that would pro-hibit ability to sign a mortgage. A credit check will be performed and evaluated. 

3 .Willingness to partner

Once selected by Habitat for Humanity, applicants become a Habitat Partner Family. Partner Families must complete the minimum required hours of volunteer work with Habitat called “Sweat Equity” before moving into their home: 200 hours for Individuals with Disabilities; 300 hours for Singles and 400 hours for Couples (Applicant & Co-Applicant). 

What is Sweat Equity? 

Sweat equity refers to the actual hands-on involvement of perspective homeowners in the construction of their homes, as well as in other Habitat and community activities. 

Homeowner Education Classes

Partner Families also attend education classes to complete their sweat equity hours. These cl asses are designed to prepare families to build, own, and maintain their new home. 

We want families to succeed as homeowners! 

Applications Accepted Year-Round! 

Ready to Get Started?