LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — As the need for affordable housing grows, so is the cost of helping. Lexington's Habitat for Humanity is breaking down how they are being impacted by rising costs.
Lexington's Habitat for Humanity has been serving the community for the last 33 years. Its leaders say they are feeling the effects of inflation and high gas prices - especially when building.
"Two to three years ago it costs about $70 a square foot to build and now that's just right over $90 a square foot. So, the costs of these items and the availability of these items is absolutely impacting our ability to complete our mission,” says Brandalin Foster with Lexington Habitat.
Lexington’s Habitat for Humanity says they built 600 new homes. Although Habitat for Humanity has battled COVID and now inflation and gas prices they say the need for affordable housing in this community is still great.
"One way the skyrocketing gas prices has really affected us is through our donation pickups," says Foster. "We have trucks on the road. It’s a free service we offer here in Lexington."
The proceeds from the store go toward continuing to provide the community with affordable housing.
Habitat Homeowner Aluta Asende is from the Democratic Republic of the Congo and is one of the many people the proceeds have helped.
"Life would have been so difficult because my wife is not really in good health and going through the bank is a lot of money we would have borrowed from the bank," said Asende.
This couple moved to Kentucky four years ago and have five children. They say they're grateful for what habitat has done for them. Without homeownership, they say rent cost would be double their current mortgage which is a little more than $500.
Asende’s wife, Esther Kashindi, says, "They made our dream become true to get a house."
Inflation can impact families of lower incomes sooner and harder. Habitat aims to help families through these tough times with financial guidance and shelter.
"Having that quality stable affordable housing is so foundational for families to be able to survive times that are economically tough," Foster says. "So, you know that they are putting their money not only into a more affordable option with our affordable mortgages but also an investment that's theirs."