06/11/04 — Home Builders to sponsor Habitat House

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Home Builders to sponsor Habitat House

By Bonnie Edwards
Published in News on June 11, 2004 2:01 PM

The Home Builders Association of Wayne County will sponsor a Habitat house this year.

The association co-sponsored a house at 102 Winslow Place with the Goldsboro-Wayne Association of Realtors last year. The owner, Alba Moradel, will move into the house within the next couple of weeks.

No starting date has yet been set for the new Home Builders' house, but Bill Edgerton, president of the Goldsboro Wayne County Habitat for Humanity, says work might start on it in the fall. He doesn't know where.

"Once we select a family, they have a chance to select from the lots we have," said Edgerton. He said the Habitat currently has three lots from which to choose.

Habitat has two qualified families awaiting a house and is working with 12 other families that are in the process of being qualified. Once they qualify, Edgerton says the selection for the next house is based on need. He wants to get a larger group qualified.

Recipient families have to live or work in Wayne County at least a year and have income 30 to 60 percent of the median income in the county. Minimum income has to be $13,000. The family must agree to be a partner with Habitat in building someone else's house, then its own. Those qualified take classes in home ownership and budgeting.

Habitat Executive Director Beth Parrish says she has been getting calls from people who want to sign up for an informational meeting. "We had scheduled one for October, but we may have one sooner," she said.

At the dedication of Ms. Moradel's house Sunday, six of the nine families that got a house were present. About 45 people attended the dedication, and Habitat officials say there was enough food for 200 at the reception.

The Habitat homeowners brought "piles and piles of food" to the dedication of Ms. Moradel's house, said Dawn Summerlin, the executive officer of the Home Builders Association. "They must have had to take some home."

She said the Home Builders are proud Edgerton got a Habitat affiliate started in Wayne County. "He's done an incredible job," she said. "He was nominated for induction into the N.C. Housing Hall of Fame at the N.C. Home Builders Legislative Conference last week in Raleigh. That is very much an honor."

Edgerton is also president of the Home Builders in Wayne County. The two organizations are very closely tied together, he said. "I enjoy building houses, and I decided a few years ago I'd rather do it with Habitat."

To keep the houses affordable, Habitat uses volunteer labor by high school students and prisoners from the federal prison at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base. The Goldsboro Wayne County affiliate received the Sandra Graham Award for its use of resources in the community and from out of town.

This year, groups of volunteers are coming from Wisconsin and from Dover, Deleware to help build houses. A group called Caravaners will return in October.

Last year, the caravan of retirees who build houses for Habitat for Humanity came for two weeks and helped build three houses. One was Ms. Moradel's house.

A local Disciple Build with people from area churches is expected to start in September.

The Home Builders are proud to have Edgerton, said Jane Bartlett, public relations chairman for the Home Builders. "We've seen communities where the Home Builders did not support the Habitats, and they did not get off the ground.... There's something about when you meet Bill in person. You see the look on his face, and you can't say no."