Culpeper Habitat for Humanity will host an orientation meeting this month for prospective homebuyers.
Jerry Martire, acting president for Culpeper Habitat for Humanity, said the organization will host the orientation Aug. 10 from 3:30 to 5 p.m. at Culpeper County Library.
“Habitat is a partnership with the family,” Martire said. “The applicants need to do a minimum of 250 hours of what we call sweat equity per adult. It’s not a hand out, it’s a hand up. One of the misconceptions is that we give away homes, we don’t, the applicant has to buy the home but it’s at a substantial discount and we carry the mortgage at zero percent.”
Martire said habitat has one home available and three lots on which they are ready to build - but they don’t have any prospective homebuyers at the moment.
They just hosted a ribbon cutting for Jennifer Driggers and her new habitat home on Spring Street and now have a vacancy at 1310 Sperryville Pike - a home that was occupied but is now open.
“It went to a young woman who was a disabled veteran but she’s outgrown it,” Martire said.
The 3 bedroom, 2 bath home needs some cosmetic upgrades but is otherwise ready to be put onto the market, Martire said.
The orientation meeting is the first of its kind in Culpeper, as late president Lanny Horton handled all of the family finding aspects of the organization. Once he passed away in January, it opened a void within the local habitat.
“That’s why we’re in the situation we’re in, nobody has set up a pipeline of prospective homebuyers,” Martire said.
Martire said Horton was a big part of the organization and since he has passed, it has become difficult for the core group of volunteers to fill his shoes.
“We’re all volunteers, we have no paid staff,” Martire said. “It’s a small cadre.”
Martire said there’s about 6-10 regular volunteers with Martire being the lead contractor in the group. One of the projects he wants to start is building out three lots on Aspen Street in Culpeper.
“It’s heartwarming to help someone who is in a rough environment and give them a hand up,” Martire said.