256-760-9515 info@shoalshabitat.org

Become a Homeowner

Simple, Decent, Affordable

Shoals Habitat for Humanity makes homeownership possible for low-income households. We offer affordable mortgage loans with 0% interest to purchase homes built by Habitat.

How to Qualify


You must have a need for adequate housing. Here are some examples of need:

  • Your housing expenses are more than 30% of your income.
  • Your house is in poor condition.
  • You are living with family or friends.
  • You live in Section 8 or Housing Authority housing.
  • Your house is overcrowded.
Structural/mechanical problems in building
Structural/mechanical problems in building

visible holes or large cracks
leaks, hazardous/toxic materials
electrical  problems
plumbing problems
appliances not working

Inadequate sleeping arrangements
Inadequate sleeping arrangements

more than 2 persons share a room
different gendered children sharing a room
persons having to sleep on the floor

Unsanitary conditions or health risks
Unsanitary conditions or health risks

sewage problems
stairway in disrepair
allergy concerns

Temporary or transitional housing
Temporary or transitional housing

family currently living with relatives
family in emergency shelter

Ability to Pay

Ability to pay is determined by information provided and collected during the application process.

Information on the paper application, pay stubs, benefit statements, previously filed federal tax returns, and credit reports are examples of the resources used to determine this ability.

Applicants must have:

  • a steady, reliable source of income and demonstrate financial responsibility.
  • the ability to pay a monthly house payment at approximately 25% of gross monthly income (taxes and insurance included).
  • the ability to pay projected monthly utilities (electric/gas & water/sewer).
  • NOT filed for bankruptcy within the past 2 years.
  • NO outstanding collections, liens or judgments that cannot reasonably be paid by the completion of the home build.

Willingness to Partner

A partner family must be willing to complete “sweat-equity” hours.

“Sweat-equity” is when a partner family takes part in building their own home and other Habitat homes and may include activities such as clearing the lot, painting, helping with construction, working in the Habitat office, or other approved activities.

  • A two-adult household is required to perform a minimum of 400 hours.
  • A portion of the sweat equity hours can be completed by family and friends.
  • All of the hours must be completed before the partner family can purchase the home.

In addition, the partner family must also be willing to attend home buyer education classes.


All applicants must provide documentation of residency and eligibility to work in the US. Anyone applying for a home with Shoals Habitat for Humanity should be a current resident of Lauderdale or Colbert County.

One of the following documents is accepted as proof of both residency and eligibility:

  • US Passport
  • Permanent Resident Card
  • Alien Registration Receipt Card (Form I-551)
  • Foreign Passport with temporary I-551 stamp or temporary I-551 printed notation on a machine-readable immigrant visa
  • Unexpired Employment Authorization Document with a Photo ID (Form I-766)
  • Unexpired Foreign Passport with Form I-94
  • Passport from Federated States of Micronesia or the Republic of the Marshall Islands with Form I-94 or Form I-94A indicating nonimmigrant admission under the Compact of Free Association Between the United States and the FSM or RMI.


If one of the above cannot be provided, one document from each category below is required:

Category 1

  • Driver’s License
  • Federal, State, or Local Government ID Card
  • Voter’s Registration Card
  • School ID card with a photograph
  • Native American tribal document
  • U.S. Military identification card/ Military Dependents ID card
  • U.S. Coast Guard Merchant Mariner Card
  • Canadian Driver’s License

Category 2

  • Social Security Card
  • U.S. Birth Certificate
  • Certification of Birth Abroad (Form FS-545)
  • US Citizen ID Card (Form I-197)
  • Resident Citizen ID Card (Form I-179)
  • Unexpired Employment Authorization by Dept. of Homeland Security
  • Native American tribal document
  • Certification of Report of Birth (Form DS-1350)
  • Native American Tribal document
  • Employment Authorization document issued by the Dept. of Homeland Security

Income Guidelines

  • All family members’ income is included in the calculation of a family’s total gross income.
  • Income from all wages, SSI, SSDI, food stamps, housing assistance, retirement, alimony, VA benefits, child support, etc are included.
  • The guidelines are annual (to convert monthly income to annual divide amount by 12).
  • Income guidelines are listed by family size.

*Income levels are set annually by US Department of Housing & Urban Development and are 30-60% of the median income. (Note: Minimum income limits have been adjusted to reflect the income required to afford the mortgage payment for the house size required for the family size.) Source: 2018 income limits summary–HUD

Want more Info?

Affordable Housing - Request for Information

Please note that this Interest Form is NOT an application for a Habitat home, but enables us to notify you when we are accepting applications and hosting an Application Information Meeting.


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