Habitat for Humanity of Peterborough and Kawartha Region celebrated the completion of its 41-unit Leahy’s Lane property on Sunday by giving new owners a preview of their condos.
Homeowners, construction workers and Habitat officials all joined in the festivities to welcome and congratulate homeowners on their achievement.
Construction of the project began in August 2019.
The Leahy’s Lane property features one- to three-bedroom units catering to seniors, couples, and families who are first-time homeowners.
Traditionally, Habitat for Humanity builds semi-detached and detached homes for its clients. The unique condo project allows the agency to serve more people on a limited lot.
“We’re used to doing single-family homes, which to serve and have the greatest impact, we’ve traditionally helped larger families access affordable homes,” said Jenn MacDonald, communications and services manager. donors to Habitat for Humanity.
“Because we were able to create units of different sizes, it allowed us to serve new demographics and more people in the community that we are looking for safe and stable homes.”
Through Habitat’s affordable homeownership model, building Leahy’s Lane is helping homeowners from low-income working families realize their dream of owning their own home.
With access to income-indexed mortgages through Kawartha Credit Union, homeowners can build equity and prepare for a future they may not have been able to achieve on the market before. traditional housing market.
“For first-time home buyers, this means they can have a secure and stable home leading to greater financial stability, which gives them the ability to plan for their future,” MacDonald said.
For people transitioning to homeownership through the Habitat for Humanity Leahy’s Lane project, it will give them something to show for their efforts over renting.
“For the past 3 1/2 years, the money I’ve paid in rent, I you have nothing to show for it,” said Syed Ali, owner of a home in Habitat’s Leahy’s Lane. for Humanity.
After working and renting an apartment in Peterborough for almost four years, Ali and his family had no chance of finding a home within their budget in the housing market.
“The cost of living is high,” he says. “You save for a down payment and set a goal, but with inflation and everything going on in the housing market and rising prices, it becomes difficult.”
There was no light at the end of the tunnel for first-time home buyers trying to bid within their budget, he said.
Ali and his wife decided to apply for the project after doing some research and submitting an application online.
“That’s the biggest piece, my satisfaction knowing that my kids can have a place they can call home, a permanent home,” Ali said.
The average home price in Peterborough has jumped 85% over the past two years, while listings are at below normal levels, making it even more difficult for families to be able to afford a home when many people bid on every available house.
“With this now I don’t have to think about this, trying to save money to make an offer on a house, and then the next thing you know, my money isn’t good enough,” did he declare.
“I don’t have to worry about struggling like this, I’ve been through it before.”
Through Habitat’s work, for every dollar spent, four dollars are returned in the form of benefits to society, MacDonald said.
“Research has shown that homeowners are happier and healthier and have more financial stability and time and money to invest in their communities,” she said.
When people can save more, they invest more in education, athletics, learning and skills development and there’s a reduced need for social programs like food banks and medical supports, MacDonald said. .