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Habitat welcomes families into new neighborhood

READ MORE: Habitat welcomes families into new neighborhood
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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- They say home is where the heart is. Today, 32 families in Wilmington have new homes thanks to Habitat for Humanity.

"This is such a fun day for us at Cape Fear Habitat. We are dedicating our first subdivision, the Cottages at Cornerstone, which is 32 homes in it," Habitat Director of Development Kitty Yerkes said. "So there are 32 families who have moved from probably pretty awful places to these beautiful, little affordable habitat homes."

The new subdivision off Princess Place Drive in Wilmington is now open and available for families to move in. Yerkes says the organization is so happy to help folks become homeowners. She says it's important for the community to know that these homes are no hand-out, rather a hand up for those in need.

"These homeowners assume a mortgage," Yerkes said. "They are not given these houses. They become taxpaying citizens, and we laugh about they're the only people who really like paying their property taxes. They are so proud to pay their property taxes. So this is exactly what we should be doing. But it happens only because of the generosity other folks in the community and it's really about neighbors helping neighbors."

New homeowner Dorothy Hyman says she thinks neighborhoods like this help move the entire community in the right direction.

"It gives everybody a chance," Hyman said. "Everybody deserves a place to live, a place to call home. And when you got children, you shouldn't have to move from place to place. You need to learn to be comfortable not only in your own skin, but in your own home."

Yerkes says phase two of this project started today with the start of eight more homes in the subdivision.

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When did Habitat for Humanity change?

not too long ago, a prospective homeowner applied and was put on a waiting list. They invested "sweat equity" in the construction of the home. They made a further commitment to put their time in on the construction of another property.

Habitat for Humanity typically did one house at a time. The land was normally donated as were materials and much of the labor. In fact, during good economic times, local businesses would sponsor a house and their employees would work on it, alongside the future homeowner, on week-ends until it was completed.

This appears to have been a mass exodus of 32 families at one time which is inconsistent with Habitat's roots.

Far cry from Habitat's beginnings.

Would likely cause former President Carter angst if the construction was with borrowed money and which allowed the homeowner to just walk in with no labor investment and perhaps no down payment.

Scott -- how about a little follow up on this for clarification?

If my last paragraph accurately describes what went on, I for one will suspend them from my designations with United Way for future donations. And I will encourage my friends and employees to do likewise.

What drive to maintain the home will a family, on the edge of poverty, have if they invest no labor or cash. That's exactly what led the mortgage meltdown as one of the primary causes. Unqualified borrowers with no equity investment.

Good deal for the occupants if they remember what mortgage payments are and are not using low interest loans which are not available to others.

Habitat

Tom, they are built one at a time. This project has been going on for years. They build one, dedicate it, the folks move in and the next one is built. They will begin phase 2 of the project soon. Also, the land is not always donated. It rarely is donated. They buy it at low cost, hence the neighborhoods they are in.

Thanks for the clarification

one did not get that impression from reading the Star News, WECT or WWAY.

Perhaps the next time a house is started the media can get out there for some coverage. Certainly more local than trolling in Tabor City.

One at a time

These houses are just now bieng dedicated because they have finally completed the last house. They were built one at a time, as Habitat normally does and have been bieng built over the course of years now. My friend was lucky enough to recieve one of these homes, and she herself was on a waiting list, put in sweat equity, and has been in her home about two years now. I don't think anything has changed, they were just donated enough land to make an actual subdivision of habitat houses rather than squeezing them into already developed area. It was not a mass production, completed all at one time.

I will be looking for

I will be looking for Scott's answer as well. This is an interesting change.