BANGOR, Maine — First-time home-owner Allison Parker and her four kids will soon move into their 4 bedroom dream home in Bangor, thanks to Habitat for Humanity.
Habitat for Humanity sells the houses with an affordable mortgage, so Parker purchases the home for less than its appraised value.
Parker says without the organization's help and efforts, her dream of being a first-time homeowner and having enough space for all her kids, could not have come true.
"Having my children and myself here to help you know, secure insulation in the basement, and to do painting and cleaning and things like that has just been a wonderful experience, I think it has really helped teach the kids the value of hard work and its also given them a sense of pride as far as taking care of the home once we move in," said Parker.
Everyone in the family has participated in the sanding, painting, picking out flooring, and other steps of the building process.
"Habitat builds the homes and then works with the partner family to establish a sale price which is affordable based on their specific dynamics and needs. They then take out a mortgage with a local lender for that amount to purchase the completed home from us," said Rebecca Kirk, executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Greater Bangor.
"It was almost like winning the lottery, we were so excited and it had been a long time dream of mine, I decided to apply because I had been kind of struggling with coming up with that big down payment to purchase a house and we were at a point were overcrowding was an issue for us and we needed a bigger space."
Kirk says Parker's house is the organization’s 4th dedication since the beginning of the COVID pandemic.
Parker and her five children will move into the new home in a few weeks.
"As an active participant in building a better future for herself and her family, Parker has put in over 200 hours of “sweat” equity. As with all qualified Habitat homeowner partners, Parker has met certain criteria: be in need of better housing, qualify for an affordable mortgage, and be willing to partner with Habitat in completing the build," added Kirk.
Parker says this homeownership opportunity will go a long way in helping to break the cycle of poverty for her children.
"The completion of our 26th house, particularly through the difficulties COVID-19 has added to this project, is a beautiful testimony of our community's commitment to providing affordable housing opportunities," said Kirk.
The home construction grant funding was thanks to the JM Huber Corporation, and the staff and students of Eastern Maine Community College’s Building Construction Technology program helped build it.
For those interested in volunteering, applying for homeownership, or with leads on land for the organization to build on, please contact the Habitat Bangor offices at (207) 942-8977.