Our Self-Help program helps low- to moderate-income households construct their own homes in rural areas.
Founded in 1993 in Santa Cruz County, the program is targeted to families who are unable to purchase a home through conventional methods and has helped more than 250 families build and own their own homes.
Families participating in a mutual self-help project perform approximately 65% of construction labor on each other's homes under qualified supervision. Working on weekends, they perform tasks such as wall framing, installing trusses, sheetrock, installing doors and windows and flooring, insulation, painting, siding, cabinets, and countertops. The savings from the reduction in labor costs allows otherwise ineligible families to own their homes. If families cannot meet their mortgage payments during the construction phase, the funds for these payments can be subsidized.