Podcast: Essex County Habitat for Humanity Invites Applications to Buy New Haverhill Duplexes

Proposed duplex at 41-43 Curtis St., Haverhill.


Essex County Habitat for Humanity is at work developing a duplex with affordable three-bedroom units in Haverhill’s Mount Washington neighborhood, but has hope for another local project as well.

Habitat for Humanity’s Director of Charitable Giving Kevin Hudson appeared Monday on WHAV’s “Win for Breakfast” program to discuss plans for the 41-43 Curtis St., Haverhill site.

“We will start excavation over the summer and get the foundation in and, once we do that, we’ll start building the home and volunteers can help us frame,” he says.

Both units, valued at $245,000 each, have approximately 1,200 square feet with three bedrooms, two full bathrooms and a single-car garage. Those interested in getting one of the sets of keys must be first-time homebuyers, have a qualifying household income and be willing to contribute 240-360 hours of “sweat equity.” Applications are due by Friday, Aug. 16, at noon. There will be both an in-person and a remote information session for those interested and wish to learn about the Habitat Homebuyer program process. The in-person session takes place Thursday, July 18, 6 p.m., at Haverhill Public Library’s Johnson Auditorium 99 Main St. A remote session takes place Saturday, July 20, 10 a.m., via Microsoft Teams. More information is available at essexcountyhabitat.org/applying.

Hudson adds the search is on for more land in Haverhill.

“We are currently looking at a couple of properties in the Mount Washington-area. Stay tuned. The site is secured for one of them, and we are just trying to figure out if it’s monetarily feasible and if we can afford it.”

Habitat for Humanity relies on donations. Stepping up for the Haverhill project is Reworld, formerly Covanta. Area Asset Manager Mark Van Weelden says, “The Essex County Habitat for Humanity has many home projects planned in and around Haverhill this year. These underfunded projects deliver positive results in our community and are most worthy of our participation and financial support. I encourage others to work alongside a future homeowner and to financially support these projects.”

Hudson says volunteers are also critical for success. He credits students from Whittier Regional Vocational Technical High School.

“Absolutely, you have to be 16 to be on the job site and then you have to be over 18 to use any of the power tools, but we definitely welcome them. There’s plenty of other stuff to do.”

Hudson finds he doesn’t have to start from the beginning when he talks about his organization.

“I think the Habitat for Humanity name is well known. A lot of people associate it with (former U.S. President) Jimmy Carter. Our vision is that someday everyone will have a safe place to live. It had been around, but Jimmy Carter really put it front and center. He was a volunteer up until about two years ago.”

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