Habitat for Humanity of McHenry County

Becoming a Habitat Homeowner

Requirements for Homeownership Applicants

Habitat’s acceptance guidelines are based on consideration of the following criteria:

Need for Housing

The applicant(s) must demonstrate that their current housing situation has one or more of the following characteristics:

  • Unsafe or very poor conditions or located in a particularly unsafe area
  • Rent, or contribution currently paid towards rent, exceeds 30% of net income
  • Size is inadequate for the present or anticipated residents
  • Other facts demonstrating a need for the type of housing Habitat can provide that goes beyond a personal desire to own a home.

Applicants will not be approved if they:

  • Can qualify for conventional financing without exceeding 30% of net monthly income
  • Have owned a home within the last three (3) years

Eligible applicants are not disqualified because they may qualify for another subsidy program, governmental or charitable, or tax deferral.

Demonstrated Ability to Pay

  • Gross household income must be between 30% and 60% of the median income for the McHenry County area at the time of application.
  • A two-year history of stable income and employment
  • An acceptable credit history, which includes a good record of paying rent and utilities
  • Bankruptcies must have been discharged for two years
  • A $1000.00 down payment on the house.
  • Ability to afford anticipated mortgage payments. Monthly payments for debt cannot exceed 43% of gross monthly income
  • Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent resident aliens and must have resided or worked in McHenry County, Illinois for the past year.


2019 Income Guidelines (Source: HUD)

Family Size

Minimum Gross Income

Maximum Gross Income


























Willingness to Partner with Habitat

  • Applicant will have to pay a $25 Application Fee. This fee is non-refundable and covers the cost of obtaining the credit report and other costs associated with processing the application.
  • Applicant and all adults living in the home must be willing to contribute at least 250 hours of sweat equity towards the building of Habitat homes, of which 100 hours must be completed on construction projects. An additional 100 hours will be added to the family requirement for every person aged 16-18 living in the home.
  • Applicant must be willing to live in a neighborhood in which Habitat is currently building
  • Applicant must be willing to continue to partner with Habitat after their home is finished through on time mortgage payments, volunteerism, and home upkeep
  • Applicant must be willing to attend required workshops for success in homeownership


*For application information, please contact Habitat for Humanity of McHenry County at (815) 759-9002.

Habitat for Humanity of McHenry County is an equal opportunity housing provider. It considers every applicant without regard to race, religious preference, gender, handicap, family status or national origin.