For 25 years, Habitat Cornwall has been raising money in our community and working with our Partner Families to build affordable homes for low income, working families. We work to break the cycle of poverty that can very easily affect multiple generations. What makes us different from a bank or mortgage broker is our ability to offer families a no-interest mortgage. We also do not require a down payment. Partnership is an extremely important – perhaps the most important – part of what we do with our Partner Families.
To date, we have built 18 homes locally. Of those homes already built, 6 families have moved out of Cornwall and area social housing making their previous units available to new tenants.
We need to address the national housing crisis on a local level, right here, right now. To meet this growing demand, we are currently building our first-semi detached project in Maxville, on land donated by the Township of North Glengarry. Earlier this year, the City of Cornwall began the process to generously donate 4 building lots within the city.
Safe, affordable housing is the foundation every person, every family needs for a stable life. When you aren’t worrying about keeping a roof over your head, you are able to focus on other important things like healthy meals, education, employment, mental health and more.
As the national housing crisis continues to make headlines, we see the impact in front of us every day. Rising rents and interest rates, lack of safe, affordable housing, extended delays on new builds as well as being priced out of the housing market, renovictions and more all make the national crisis a local problem.
All of our families to date have been selected for Habitat’s home build program due to the condition of their rental unit, never their inability to pay their rent. But now, the bulk of applicants are applying based primarily on affordability. Habitat still receives applications based on conditions, but we are seeing an increased number of applications based on affordability, renovictions, etc. The demand for our affordable homeownership program has grown exponentially.
To continue to be able to build more affordable homes for local families, we need the support of our community. Everyone knows a story of someone forced to live in a camper trailer, someone being kicked out of a rental due to the landlord selling or renovating, someone with rent or a mortgage that has skyrocketed, someone who has to choose between food or shelter. Maybe this is your story. We are working hard to change the ending to that story.
At Habitat, we are not custom home builders. We build safe, decent, affordable homes for local, low income families. We build based on the needs of a Partner Family, not a wish list. Those needs can include accessibility features and number of bedrooms.
Habitat homes are built to all codes and standards required by any builder within the Province of Ontario. Simply put, this is our minimum standard. We are also extremely proud of the fact that our projects exceed National Energy Code for Buildings energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions standards. This means not only do our families have an affordable mortgage, but an affordable home to operate afterwards. 
We are asking our community to help us make an impact for safe, affordable housing. A $10,000 contribution helps give more local families a solid foundation leading to strength, stability and self-reliance.


Estimated Cost: $464,000

Date of Completion: November 1, 2024

What do you wish everyone knew: We receive pre-applications from low-income, working families from Cornwall on an almost weekly basis.

After purchasing a Habitat Home, our partner families see amazing benefits. While those benefits are seen as being most impactful on an individual family basis, the greater community is served by this as well.
Habitat for Humanity families are happier, healthier, and more financially secure after moving into their Habitat home:
•       89% say their family life improved
•       70% reported improved health, including reduced colds & flu, allergies, asthma symptoms, and stress
•       65% reported an improvement in children's confidence
•       61% increase in extracurricular activity participation
•       60% see a reduction in food bank usage
Six of the previously build Habitat homes have moved families out of Cornwall and area social housing. This means those resources become more readily available for other local families in need of affordable housing. Plain and simple, Habitat families use less social resources (food banks, geared to income child care, etc) as they become more stable, get better jobs, see better physical and mental health and more.
Over 10% of Canadians are in core housing need; this means they have no where else to go. For renter households, that jumps to 20% while also seeing related household costs sky rocket 17.6% in the last 2 years. Affordable home ownership with Habitat for Humanity can be the first step to mitigating this.

What do you know about this organization that you wish everyone knew?: Habitat homes are not given away - our Partner Families do not 'win' a new home. Partner Families are subject to a thorough selection process to ensure they meet the necessary criteria and are willing to partner with Habitat for Humanity. They do not require a down payment, but they do commit 500 hours of volunteer time to the organization. Completed homes are sold to Partner Families at fair market value with an interest free, geared to income mortgage that is held by Habitat for Humanity Cornwall & The Counties. This 'hand-up' helps to break the cycle of poverty.

Habitat Cornwall Partner Family mortgage payments are directed to an account which is used solely to build more, local, affordable homes.