Traver Families Move In To Homes They Built Together

Traver Families Move In To Homes They Built Together

Posted on July 2, 2018

On June 15, keys were handed out to eleven families who built their homes together in Traver (Tulare County).

Among the families is Amanda Navarro who built a home with her husband Jordan Navarro. “This experience means a lot to my family. My daughters are also excited to have their own room,” said Amanda. “We were renting before and my daughters had to share a room, but now we have a home of our own. The location is also perfect for us. I work for Traver Elementary School, which is only a few houses away”.

The rural community of Traver has historically lacked new housing options. The demand from the community for affordable housing, coupled with revitalization efforts by the County of Tulare, led Self-Help Enterprises to commit resources to help improve infrastructure and housing. After many years of planning and anticipation, Self-Help Enterprises was able to purchase and develop the subdivision in partnership with the County, who are now developing plans to improve community infrastructure. The affordable housing project is complemented by a new health clinic facility built by Family HealthCare Network, another traditional partner of Self-Help Enterprises, on a nearby site. The construction of the new self-help neighborhood, located at the northwest corner of Canal Drive and Jacobs Drive, has also resulted in sidewalk improvements along one side of Jacobs Drive.

Through the Self-Help Housing program, the eleven families worked together under supervision from a construction superintendent to build one another’s houses.  Each homeowner contributed a minimum of forty hours per week (over sixty five percent of the construction labor) toward completion of all homes in the group. These labor hours, or “sweat equity,” are used as the down payment on their new home, resulting in affordable monthly payments. The families receive their keys and move into their homes once all homes in the group are completed.

The single-family, energy-efficient homes range from 1,256 to 1,361 square feet and feature three or four bedrooms, two baths, covered patios, and two-car garages.

Self-Help Enterprises provides homeownership education, financial fitness counseling, and home maintenance training prior to completion of the program. Historically this training has made self-help homeowners among the most successful long-term homeowners of any program in the nation.

Since 1965, when Self-Help Enterprises pioneered the mutual self-help housing program, the organization has helped more than 6,250 families in the San Joaquin Valley build their own homes.

See more photos of the families here.

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