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Habitat for Humanity and Meridian to offer financing for Fergus housing project

FILE. Habitat for Humanity is working to get homes for Okanagan residents built. Global News

Habitat for Humanity Guelph-Wellington is helping families in Fergus find an affordable home.

The local chapter has partnered with Meridian Credit Union, which will provide financing for homeowners living at the Garafraxa Village Project.

Kathryn Stokes, manager of housing partnerships, tells CJOY News that this partnership will help provide a home for families who typically couldn’t move into one.

“These are families that are not making the income needed to afford homes at this time,” she said.

“Meridian looks at the families’ financial situation and is able to provide a mortgage with affordable payments,”she explained.

Stokes said although it doesn’t equate to the full price of the home, Habitat for Humanity is able to hold on to the remaining second mortgage at zero per cent interest for 20 years.

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She said this partnership bridges the gap for homeownership for families.

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“They’re working with families to provide as much of a mortgage as they can with affordable payments, and they also work with them to provide education as well,” she said.

The project in Fergus is planning to have three- and four-bedroom units to help more than 20 families in the area.

Through this agreement, in the next two years, Habitat for Humanity GW is looking to provide access to homeownership to families in the Guelph Wellington area as well.

To be eligible for the affordable homeownership program, there are several criteria families must meet.

Among the criteria include living in Guelph-Wellington for a year before they apply.

“They must be within our income threshold, which is $64,500 to $113,000. That is gross household income so we would look at all income earners in the household,” she said.

In addition, Stokes said they look at responsible debt management, adequate funds before closing costs, and a willingness to partner through volunteering.

“Families must be able to have an ability to pay a mortgage. With this pre-approval from Meridian, and then the partnership, we just need to make sure families can sustainably afford that mortgage,” she said.

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Stokes said even if you don’t qualify, they encourage applications.

She said the program is trying to diversify communities and to help families and support whoever is in need.

To learn more about the affordable homeownership program and see if you’re eligible, go to habitatgw.ca.

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