Habitat for Humanity able to build more affordable homes at lower costs with enactment of bipartisan
New law allowing donated home appraisal services will lower costs to build Habitat homes ATLANTA (May 24, 2018) – Professional home appraisers will once again be permitted to donate their services to Habitat for Humanity thanks to new legislation signed by the president today. The HOME Act, which permits donated appraisals to nonprofit housing developers, was included in a package of financial reform legislation that Congress gave final approval to last week. “This bill will help us keep affordable housing affordable,” said Jonathan Reckford, CEO of Habitat for Humanity International. “Across the United States, Habitat volunteers build thousands of new homes alongside homebuyers every year. By ensuring that professional appraisers are also able to volunteer their services, this legislation will help keep loan origination fees low for new homebuyers. That’s good news for people buying Habitat homes, and it’s good news for the local Habitat organizations across the nation that will be able to use the savings to build, rehabilitate and repair more homes.” The HOME Act was included in S. 2155, the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act. Originally introduced in the Senate by Sens. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, and Michael Bennet, D-Colo., and in the House by Rep. Dave Trott, R-Mich., the legislation modifies a provision of the Dodd-Frank financial reform law to clarify that professional home appraisers are permitted to donate their services to nonprofit housing developers like Habitat. Home appraisers who want to volunteer their services can go to habitat.org to find their local Habitat organization. About Habitat for Humanity Driven by the vision that everyone needs a decent place to live, Habitat for Humanity began in 1976 as a grassroots effort on a community farm in southern Georgia. The Christian housing organization has since grown to become a leading global nonprofit working in local communities across all 50 states in the U.S. and in more than 70 countries. Families and individuals in need of a hand up partner with Habitat for Humanity to build or improve a place they can call home. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage. Through financial support, volunteering or adding a voice to support affordable housing, everyone can help families achieve the strength, stability and self-reliance they need to build better lives for themselves. Through shelter, we empower. To learn more, visit habitat.org.