Monday morning board members of Habitat for Humanity along with employees and volunteers were working to build the first house in Fuller's Landing, Habitat's new subdivision at 4300 W. Cook Road.
About 30 people were nailing and cutting wood as they put together the framework for what will be the subdivision's model home. By 10 a.m. one of the outside framed walls was already standing.
Megan Hubartt, Habitat spokeswoman, said the home would be used as a teaching platform for the families who will be building their own homes at the new site. They will be able to learn maintenance, landscaping and general home operations through the use of the model home. It will also serve as an example to the community of what the new homes will look like. Hubartt said a lot of the initial misgivings of neighboring subdivision homeowners have settled down and the agency now has a number of area residents who are very supportive of the project. Hubartt said she thinks people just weren't too sure what to expect at first.
Hubartt said they plan to have the basic structure up by Oct 14 in time for the Habitat's Blue Jean Backyard BBQ fundraiser for Fuller's Landing on Oct 17. The home will have no plumbing or electricity because that phase of the project - sewers, electricity and roads - will not be in place until spring.
Fuller's Landing will contain three models of home, featuring designs of one-, one-and-a-half, and two-story floor plans with a minimum of three bedrooms in each design. The homes will also have two-car garages, according to information provided by the nonprofit.
The subdivision will be built over the next five to seven years, according to Justin Berger, the nonprofit's executive director. The homes will be built at costs ranging from $60,000 to $65,000, due to them being built with donated materials and labor that includes a healthy dose of volunteerism, to keep the monthly payments for the homeowners at $500 per month, including escrow. However, Berger said the homes assess for as much as $115,000.
The nonprofit will serve as the builder, developer and mortgage lender for the subdivision, meaning that Habitat's application and training processes will be in effect, including the homeowner "sweat equity" that requires the buyer to perform 300 hours of community service, as well as attend multiple classes on financial literacy and sustainable homeownership.
Fort Wayne Habitat for Humanity is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, ecumenical Christian housing ministry using volunteer labor to build simple, affordable homes through partnerships with qualified Allen County families. Completed homes are sold to Habitat homeowners with a $500 down payment and an interest-free mortgage. The revolving fund created by mortgage payments received allows Habitat to commit 100 percent of every dollar donated to additional housing opportunities in the community.