We are Habitat for Humanity
East Bay/Silicon Valley
We know that affordable homeownership can transform a life, shape a community, and change the world. We do more than believe in change. We build it.
Unstable housing can:
- Lead to overcrowded and substandard living conditions
- Cause health problems such as asthma and depression
- Hinder a child’s performance in school
- Leave little to no money in savings for a family’s future
Homeownership offers the stability families need to build self-reliance and a strong foundation for future success. Homeowners are able to escape the anxiety of rent hikes and eviction threats, investing in themselves and creating a legacy for their families. Homeownership gives families with limited incomes the opportunity to break the cycle of poverty.
Homeownership is correlated with a host of positive success indicators:
- Children of homeowners have higher educational attainment.
- Young children of homeowners see higher achievement in math and reading, and exhibit fewer behavioral problems.
- Teenaged children of homeowners are more likely to stay in school.
- Homeowners’ children have higher lifetime annual incomes.
Dr. Megan Sandel of Boston University School of Medicine puts it in stark terms: “A safe, decent, affordable home is like a vaccine. It literally prevents disease.” Indeed, for many Habitat homeowners, their Habitat home is a radical departure from their previously overcrowded, hazardous, or substandard housing.
Studies have shown that stable, affordable housing is closely tied to health:
- Families with affordable housing options are at a lower risk of lead poisoning and exposure to mold and other allergens, which can trigger asthma
- When a family pays a high proportion of its income toward housing, health suffers as less income goes toward healthy food and health care expenses.
- The instability of renting can be disruptive to health care. Children without stable housing are more likely to use costly emergency services.
Homeowners report greater life satisfaction, self-esteem, perceived control over their lives, and physical health.
In a challenging and unstable housing environment, families with limited incomes are often the most vulnerable to the whims of the market. These hardworking families face a daily, monthly struggle to meet their housing costs, while contending with a fear that an eviction, a rent hike, or simply an unanticipated expense will mean displacement.
For families like these, a stable, affordable place to call home means:
- The ability to put down roots in a community
- No disruption in schooling
- An investment in themselves – in their savings, in their education, in their retirement, in their passions, in the generations to come.
Homeowners have a refuge from the whims of an unpredictable rental market. As homeowners move less frequently than renters, they have the opportunity to become more deeply integrated into the fabric of a community. Homeownership lends greater stability to a neighborhood. Homeowners are more likely not only to build strong, stable lives for their own families, but for their communities as well.
Homeownership has strong connections to community:
- Homeowners spend more time and money in maintaining their homes, contributing to the value and image of a community.
- Homeowners are shown to be more involved in their communities, with a higher likelihood of volunteering.
- Homeowners are more likely to be politically active.
How we work
We invest in people. We empower people – hardworking people with limited incomes – to invest in themselves. Habitat homeowners purchase their homes through a nonprofit mortgage and receive financial counseling to ensure they are prepared for successful homeownership. Through a range of innovative, sustainable, solution-oriented programs, we make affordable homeownership a reality for more people.
Every $1 Invested
Generates $20 in our Economy
Cycle of Hope 2023
Cycle of Hope brings hundreds of cyclists, volunteers, and fundraisers together to raise awareness and funds to benefit and celebrate Habitat for Humanity's work right here in the Bay Area. Learn more!
Housing & Equity Townhall
Join us for a conversation about housing and equity with guest speakers and co-authors Richard and Leah Rothstein.
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