MARIANNA, Fla. (WMBB) — Chipola Area Habitat for Humanity officials said they have committed to building 10 affordable family homes in Marianna.

It’s part of their three-year plan with the city.

“We’re excited about the opportunity to take a lot that essentially you have to maintain grass, cutting, and things of that nature to an actual home for a family who can have the long-term benefit of it.” Chipola Area Habitat For Humanity Executive Director Carmen Smith said.

This local Habitat group has had an inventory property agreement with the City of Marianna for eight years.

Through it, the organization has been able to buy empty lots at great discounts.

“The City of Marianna wins because we have a property that is a new home inside the city limits of Marianna,” City Manager Jim Dean said. “The family wins because they have an affordable home, a place where they can live, and go to work hopefully within a short commuting distance.”

This process also benefits the surrounding community.

“When Habitat comes in and builds a home, not only does that provide shelter it puts a house back on the tax roll which is revenue,” Resident William Long Jr. said.

Long’s mother lives near one of the properties Habitat just bought.

He believes the organization’s work also helps maintain the property values of nearby homes.

“We’re constantly trying to build our capacity to expand our services and deepen our impact,” Smith said.

The organization hopes to have all 10 homes built and ready for sale to qualified buyers by December 2024.

If you’d like to help build these homes, click here for a link to the volunteer page.