Habitat for Humanity Tucson making difference during affordable housing crisis

Published: Dec. 2, 2021 at 5:07 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - The skyrocketing housing market and rising cost of rentals can create challenges for many southern Arizona families. The median Tucson home price for November was nearly $350,000, according to Movoto.

Habitat for Humanity is giving local families the ability to own a home. Homeowners help to build their houses and then pay an affordable mortgage.

“With the whole housing crisis, these homes are being sold at market value but it’s on our end to be able to underbudget the houses with materials and labor. That’s where we can skim the most off the top for the homeowners,” said Remy Conesa, the assistant site supervisor with Habitat for Humanity.

Conesa said they’re close to completing a 19-home development in a Flowing Wells neighborhood. The organization just started building 12 more homes in Marana that should be done sometime next summer.

“Getting the walls up, working on a lot of the roofs right now. it’s going pretty quickly right now,” he said.

The pandemic caused some setbacks and delays. Habitat had weeks when volunteer numbers dwindled from about 60 to just a handful.

“We’d really love more regular volunteers. People planning to retire and have any interest in doing something constructive. get started because I knew next to nothing when I started,” said volunteer John Evans.

Evans started dedicating his time to Habitat 25 years ago. He and his wife now help out three days a week and he described why they’re so passionate about volunteering.

“Because you see something getting done and it’s wonderful working with the homeowners and talking to them about why they’re doing it and how it improves their lives,” he said.

Their dedication is helping give the community more affordable housing at a very critical time.

Learn more about volunteering or becoming a Habitat homeowner, here.

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