Despite Durham’s prosperity, many of our neighbors struggle to find safe, comfortable, and affordable housing. Durham has approximately 2,500 homeless residents, and one in five of our neighbors lives in poverty. A little more than 36 percent of Durham’s occupied housing units have housing problems, meaning that 35,000 Durham renters and homeowners have difficulty.

Their housing problems include:

  • Substandard conditions, going without adequate facilities or living in dilapidated homes
  • Struggling with overcrowding, sleeping more than one person per room
  • Being cost burdened, paying more than 30 percent of their income on housing

Habitat for Humanity of Durham refuses to accept this. We believe that it is our responsibility to eliminate substandard housing in Durham and help foster thriving communities. We envision a Durham where decent, affordable, and sustainable housing is available to all.

Help us advocate for affordable housing:

City of Durham Partnership

The City of Durham is one of Habitat’s strongest partners, providing land for home construction and second mortgages for our homeowners. Please thank the City for its partnership -- and encourage it to continue working with Habitat -- by emailing the entire City Council, including the Mayor, at

Help us Fight for Federal Funds

Durham Habitat uses the federal Self-Help Homeownership Opportunity Program to acquire property for affordable housing. It has far exceeded its performance targets in numbers of families’ assisted, home equity created, low default rates, and private funding leveraged. Despite these successes, Congress slashed funding for SHOP in half in fiscal year 2012 — from $27 million to $13.5 million — and the program could face further cuts in fiscal year 2013.

Your voice is critical right now. Please express your strong support for maintaining stable funding for SHOP by contacting Durham County's Congressional delegation:

Habitat Success Stories

Lal is a Burmese refugee who came to Durham after stops in India and Thailand. Lal partnered with Habitat and the Durham Literacy Center to renovate a historic home in East Durham. “There is no more fear,” Lal said. “We won’t have to move again because the home belongs to us.”