Nova Scotia

Halifax family excited about new Habitat home

Two Halifax families are preparing to move into their new Habitat for Humanity homes.
Rachael Jacklin stopped by her new home Friday. (CBC)

Two Halifax families are preparing to move into their new Habitat for Humanity homes.

The charity builds affordable housing for people who would be unable to afford buying their own property.

Rachael Jacklin was able to look at her new home in Spyfield from the outside Friday, but will make her first step inside Saturday.

She said she and her three young children can hardly wait to get the keys.

"I'm a little impatient, very excited. I think I'm going to be blown away," she said.

Jacklin and her youngest son were both diagnosed with a genetic illness that limits mobility earlier this year.

The home they currently rent is filled with stairs and was getting harder to manage.

"I have difficulty with the stairs. My son has difficulty with the stairs. We're living in a house with probably 20 to 30 stairs. That's very difficult in itself," she said.  

Her sister had once volunteered with Habitat for Humanity and Jacklin thought she should look into the local branch. After a long process with multiple interviews, she learned about her new home a few weeks ago.

"I think I was the one that instantly went to tears. I think everybody kind of got a kick out of that one because I was a little bit of a mess, but it's starting to click now," she said. "I can't put it into words. Life is going to be a lot easier."

The second home went to Davina Hogan and her two young children.

"We are excited to have a house of our own, to start our own new family Christmas traditions this year. This will be an exciting new chapter in our lives and Christmas makes it even more special," she said.

Energy efficiency will save on bills

Denise Fawthrop of Habitat for Humanity was inside the home Friday ensuring everything was ready.

"We're doing some painting. The stoves and fridges are arriving this afternoon, then we're doing a bit of cleaning," she said. "To finally see our families get to move into their homes is just really exciting."

The Spryfield home is Habitat for Humanity's first fully energy efficient home. The green technology reduces heating and cooling bills through the year.

"It's important for people to be able to own a home in a way that they can afford, but also to live their lives in a way they can afford," Fawthrop said.

Habitat for Humanity builds and rehabilitates homes through volunteer labour and donations of money and materials. The houses are sold to families at no profit and the monthly mortgage payments go into a revolving fund that is used to build more homes.

Homeowners also usually invest hundreds of hours of their own labour in "sweat equity" to build the home.