How Families Qualify

We serve families of all ethnicities, racial backgrounds and faiths. Habitat KC does not discriminate, and families do not need to have Christian beliefs to participate in our homeownership program.

There are just a few steps involved to becoming a Habitat homeowner:

Step 1 - Come to an Application Session
All persons interested in buying a home through our program are invited to attend an application session at our office. These are typically offered once a month on the first Saturday, but please check our event calendar to confirm current dates.  The session takes about 2 hours and covers:

  • an overview video of what Habitat for Humanity does
  • the advantages of home ownership and how it differs from renting
  • an overview of the Habitat KC homeownership program, including program requirements, current opportunities and why 0% interest is a great opportunity
  • a chance for you to ask all of your questions.
  • If, after learning all the previous information, you are are ready to apply, we will take the time to assist you with completing the application.

In order to complete the application, copies of the following documentation are required:

  • social security cards for all household members
  • birth certificate/green card for all household members
  • last year's Federal tax return (form 1040)
  • last two paycheck stubs
  • most recent benefit statement for SSI, Disability, AFDC, TANF and/or food stamps (if applicable)
  • records to verify amount of child support (if applicable)
  • 12-month payment summary from two major utilities (water, electric, or gas)
  • rental receipts for the last 3 months
  • copy of divorce decree (if applicable)

Please note that copies can not be made at the Habitat KC office - you must already have your copies made and bring them with you to the application session.  If you'd like to see the application ahead of time, you can download a copy from the application page

Income Guidelines
Families are considered only if their total income is between 30-50% of Kansas City median family income.  Below is the current chart based on recent figures (HUD, May 2010).  This income and employment history must be steady and verifiable for at least one year.

Number of people in household

Monthly household income range


$1238 - 2058


$1413 - 2350


$1588 - 2646


$1763 - 2938


$1904 - 3175


$2046 - 3408


$2188 - 3646


$2329 - 3879

HOUSING AND LONG-TERM DEBT MUST NOT EXCEED 45% OF GROSS INCOME. These expenses include principal, taxes, home insurance, auto loans, credit cards, child support, and a reserve fund for home repairs.

All Habitat Kansas City homeowners must be willing to partner with Habitat KC and commit to doing ‘sweat equity’ hours.  Sweat equity refers to hands-on involvement of homeowner families in the construction of their or their neighbor's home, as well as participation in other Habitat and community activities.  The number of hours required is 250-350 based on whether you receive a renovated home or a newly constructed home. Submitting an application implies that you are willing to participate in our program and complete these hours.

Step 2 – Credit Check
Every potential homeowner who applies and meets the income guidelines will have to submit to a credit check.  There is a $25 fee for this check. Although your credit doesn’t have to be perfect, you can have no open judgments or repossessions.  In addition, you can not have filed bankruptcy within the last two years and your total collection debt must be under $1,000.  

Step 3 – Home Visit
Each family who passes the criteria above will qualify for a home visit. During this visit, current dwelling conditions will be assessed, as well as information about each family member living in the dwelling. This visit is designed to establish need.

Applicants are approved based on need for shelter, ability to pay back the 0% interest mortgage, and willingness to partner with Habitat Kansas City doing sweat equity hours.  The selection of families who will purchase homes from Habitat KC is done by the Family Selection Committee in a way that does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, color, age, handicap, religion, marital status, or because all or part of the applicant's income is derived from public assistance programs.

If you still have questions about the program, please contact our Director of Family Services.