Habitat for Humanity Edmonton has provided a hand up to over 730 families since 1991 through an affordable home ownership program. This success was accomplished through the hard work of volunteers, donors, staff and other stakeholders who have invested their time and resources into building a great Habitat affiliate. In 2019, Habitat embarked on developing a mortgage model that would benefit partner families while providing Habitat with a greater degree of financial stability. The results were a new mortgage model moving forward (after October 1, 2019) and an optional Special Mortgage Offer that we believe provides the best path forward for families.
To ensure that every partner family in the Habitat program prior to October 1, 2019 is presented with the option to voluntarily upgrade their mortgage, Habitat is sending them letters to outline a Special Mortgage Offer for their consideration. There is no obligation or pressure for families to choose the Special Mortgage Offer. All families who entered the program prior to October 1, 2019, have been grandfathered into one of Habitat Edmonton’s former mortgage models. Families in former mortgage models can explore whether this Special Mortgage Offer is the right fit for their family, or to simply continue with the mortgage model they have for as long as they remain in the program.
The Special Mortgage Offer was developed because Habitat Edmonton realized that most families would benefit by transitioning to a model that provides healthier benefits and alleviates inherent risks, such as an increase in monthly payments due to increased household income.
Benefits of the Special Mortgage Offer include:
- No down payment.
- Access to shared home market appreciation with no risk of depreciation. Former models offered limited or no access to shared market appreciation.
- An affordable monthly payment that remains the same throughout the entirety of each mortgage term (capped payments for each 5-year term). In our legacy mortgage model (mortgages signed between 1991 and 2018), a family’s income is assessed each year and their monthly payments are adjusted accordingly.
- A preferred interest-rate on a first mortgage with a bank, and an interest-free second mortgage held by Habitat for 20 years.
- Building a credit history with a financial institution.
Moving forward, Habitat will continue to explore mortgage models that will continue to provide our partner families with a life-changing experience through an effective, beneficial, sustainable, and affordable home ownership program.
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