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Flathead Valley housing nonprofits begin partnership

| February 7, 2024 12:00 AM

Two Flathead Valley nonprofits that work to overcome affordable homeownership challenges are joining forces. 

Northwest Montana Community Land Trust and Habitat for Humanity of Flathead Valley have signed a memo of understanding to work together to build homes that will remain permanently affordable and available only to income-qualified purchasers in perpetuity. 

The Northwest Montana Community Land Trust will own and lease the property under the houses that homeowners who have worked with Habitat for Humanity’s staff and volunteers to construct. 

Kim Morisaki with the land trust praised Habitat for its work. 

“Habitat is a great organization with qualified staff and volunteers and by partnering we can work to create many more houses per year,” she said in a release. “The people working in the Flathead want to own their own homes and this MOU will allow us to meet some of that  demand at an attainable price.” 

MaryBeth Morand with Habitat says the land trust is an ideal partner for Habitat for Humanity. 

By subtracting the cost of the land from the purchase price of the home and providing their sweat equity with Habitat’s volunteers, the homebuyers can purchase the home with only a small mortgage, well below market prices. 

“Our values align and our missions complement each other,” she said in a release. “Also, NWMCLT is an important thought partner for us in visioning the state of housing in the Flathead in the decades to come. Signing this MOU is an important step forward to finding  joint solutions to a large-scale socio-economic problem.” 

Habitat for Humanity’s staff brings valuable community outreach, mortgage management knowledge and construction skills to the building project and many of their volunteers have been building homes for years or decades. NWMTCLT will manage the property into the future to ensure that the homes remain affordable to members of the workforce and the families that make our community vital.  

To learn more about Habitat for Humanity, visit www.habitatflathead.org/. To learn more about Northwest Montana Community Land Trust, visit www.nwmtclt.org.

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