Habitat for Humanity Lake-Sumter is gearing up to build its next seven homes.
The organization closed its application period this week after receiving more than 200 applicants for its next seven homes, which will be built in Leesburg, Lady Lake, Mascotte and Coleman.
The number of families who applied for affordable housing help was a slight increase from past cycles, said Lacie Himes, development director with Habitat for Humanity Lake-Sumter.
“It feels great to know we are reaching the people in need, but it’s bittersweet to not get to everyone at once,” she said.
The next step is to evaluate each application and and choose which families will be accepted, a pime.
“Things like family size, their location and median income are all considered,” Himes said. “So are things like credit.”
Some families are close to meeting the requirements, but need extra help before being eligible.
Habitat for Humanity of Lake-Sumter hosts free financial literacy programs to help families learn tools like budgeting and credit counseling.
“I had a homeowner recently close on a home who had previously applied two times and didn’t qualify,” Himes said. “It felt so good to see her grow and get to where she wanted and needed to be.”
Himes said families also need to know how to be good homeowners and how to properly budget for home expenses, and Habitat offers the training even after people are placed, if needed.
Other factors, like where a family is located, can determine whether they make it through the process.
If a family is located in Lady Lake and can’t or does not want to relocate to somewhere a house is being built, they might not get a house in that “cycle,” Himes said.