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Habitat for Humanity seeks land for Castlegar build

Kyra Hoggan
By Kyra Hoggan
June 9th, 2010

 West Kootenay Habitat for Humanity is asking the City of Castlegar for land in the hope of starting a Castlegar build as soon as 2011.

Local Habitat chair Kathy Fair told council, at its regular meeting Monday night, that there is a demand for a Habitat work Castlegar.   “We’ve got a huge number of phone calls asking us when we’re going to get a build in Castlegar,” Fair said, adding a Habitat house is a hand up, not a hand out.
“Habitat has strict criteria for (choosing families),” she said. “It’s based on need, but they have to provide proof they can pay a mortgage, and sweat equity is the down payment (500 hours of work during the build).”   Councillor Deb McIntosh asked if children were a factor in choosing the partner familes.   “Yes, we look for children,” she said. “Our last (build) was a three-bedroom, one bath, and (the partner family) had five children.”
She said the mortgage is never more than 30 per cent of the partner family’s income, is interest-free, and based on the home’s assessed value. The revenue from monthly mortgage payments then goes directly toward building more homes.   West Kootenay Habitat for Humanity, Fair said, started in 1996 and has built two houses and one duplex which currently house four families.   “I think what you guys do is wonderful,” McIntosh said.   The request was referred to the city’s planning and development committee, which will then report back to council with a recommendation regarding the request for a land donation.   

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