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Rule 3.4 Earnest Money

A. The responsible broker is responsible at all times for earnest money deposits. Earnest money accepted by the broker or any licensee for which the broker is responsible and upon acceptance of a mutually agreeable contract is required to deposit the money into a trust account prior to the close of business of the next banking day. The responsible broker is required to promptly account for and remit the full amount of the deposit or earnest money at the consummation or termination of transaction. A licensee is required to pay over to the responsible broker all deposits and earnest money immediately upon receipt thereof. Earnest money must be returned promptly when the purchaser is rightfully entitled to same allowing reasonable time for clearance of the earnest money check. In the event of uncertainty as to the proper disposition of earnest money, the broker may turn earnest money over to a court of law for disposition. Failure to comply with this regulation shall constitute grounds for revocation or suspension of license.

 

B. When the broker is the agent for the seller and for any reason the seller fails or is unable to consummate the transaction, the broker has no right to any portion of the earnest money deposited by the purchaser, even if a commission has been earned. The entire amount of the earnest money deposit must be returned to the purchaser and the broker should look to the seller for compensation.

C. Accurate records shall be kept on escrow accounts of all monies received, disbursed, or on hand. All monies shall be individually identified as to a particular transaction. Escrow records shall be kept in accordance with standard accounting practices and shall be subject to inspection at all times by the Commission. Monies received in a trust account on behalf of clients or customers are not assets of the broker; however, a broker may deposit and keep in each escrow account or rental account some personal funds for the express purpose of covering service charges and other bank debits related to each account.

D. If a broker, as escrow agent, accepts a check and later finds that such check has not been honored by the bank on which it was drawn, the broker shall immediately notify all parties involved in the transaction.

§73-35-105. Interest on Real Estate Brokers' Escrow Accounts (IREBEA) program

(1) The IREBEA program shall be a voluntary program based upon willing participation by real estate brokers, whether proprietorships, partnerships or professional corporations.

(2) IREBEA shall apply to all clients or customers of the participating brokers whose funds on deposit are either nominal in amount or to be held for a short period of time.

(3) The following principles shall apply to clients’ or customers’ funds which are held by brokers who elect to participate in IREBEA:

(a)

(a) No earnings on the IREBEA accounts may be made available to or utilized by a broker.

(b)

(b) Upon the request of the client or customer, earnings may be made available to the client whenever possible upon deposited funds which are neither nominal in amount nor to be held for a short period of time; however, traditional broker-client or broker-customer relationships do not compel brokers either to invest clients’ or customers’ funds or to advise clients or customers to make their funds productive.

(c)

Clients’ or customers’ funds which are nominal in amount or to be held for a short period of time shall be retained in an interest-bearing checking or savings trust account with the interest, less any service charge or fees, made payable at least quarterly to any chair of real estate, local affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, Inc., or local affiliate of Fuller Center for Housing, Inc. A separate accounting shall be made annually for all funds received.

(D)

The broker shall select in writing that the chair of real estate, local affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, Inc., or local affiliate of Fuller Center for Housing, Inc., shall be the beneficiary of such funds for the interest earnings on such funds. The interest earnings shall not be divided between one or more beneficiaries.

 

(e)

The determination of whether clients’ or customers’ funds are nominal in amount or to be held for a short period of time rests in the sound judgment of each broker, and no charge of ethical impropriety or other breach of professional conduct shall attend a broker’s exercise of judgment in that regard.

(f)

Notification to clients or customers whose funds are nominal in amount or to be held for a short period of time is unnecessary for those brokers who choose to participate in the program.

 

Participation in the IREBEA program is accomplished by the broker’s written notification to an authorized financial institution.

That communication shall contain an expression of the broker’s desire to participate in the program and, if the institution has not already received appropriate notification, advice regarding the Internal Revenue Service’s approval of the taxability of earned interest or dividends to a chair of real estate, or a local affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International, Inc., or local affiliate of Fuller Center for Housing, Inc.

(4) The following principles shall apply to those clients’ or customers’ funds held in trust accounts by brokers who elect not to participate in IREBEA:

(a)

No earnings from the funds may be made available to any broker.

(b)

Upon the request of a client or customer, earnings may be made available to the client or customer whenever possible upon deposited funds which are neither nominal in amount nor to be held for a short period of time; however, traditional broker-client or broker-customer relationships do not compel brokers either to invest clients’ or customers’ funds or to advise clients or customers to make their funds productive.

(c)

Clients’ or customers’ funds which are nominal in amount or to be held for short periods of time, and for which individual income generation allocation is not arranged with a financial institution, shall be retained in a noninterest-bearing demand trust account.

(D)

The determination of whether clients’ or customers’ funds are nominal in amount or to be held for a short period of time rests in the sound judgment of each broker, and no charge of ethical impropriety or other breaches of professional conduct shall attend a broker’s exercise of judgment in that regard.

(5) The Mississippi Real Estate Commission shall adopt appropriate and necessary rules in compliance with the provisions of Sections 73-35-101 through 73-35-105.

IREBEA Beneficiaries

Habitat for Humanity

Fuller Center for Housing

HABITAT FOR HUMANITY

Frequently asked questions

What is Habitat for Humanity?

Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit housing organization working locally and in nearly 1,400 communities across the United States and in approximately 70 countries around the world. 

Habitat’s vision is of a world where everyone has a decent place to live. 

Habitat works toward this vision by building and improving homes in partnership with individuals and families in need of a decent and affordable place to live.

Our mission

Seeking to put God’s love into action, Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build homes, communities and hope.

Our vision

A world where everyone has a decent place to live.

Our principles

Demonstrate the love of Jesus Christ.

Focus on shelter.

Advocate for affordable housing.

Promote dignity and hope.

Support sustainable and transformative development.

Who we are

Habitat for Humanity partners with people in your community, and all over the world, to help them build or improve a place they can call home.

Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage.

With your support, Habitat homeowners achieve the strength, stability, and independence they need to build a better life for themselves and for their families.

Through our 2020 Strategic Plan, Habitat for Humanity will serve more people than ever before through decent and affordable housing.

Non-proselytizing policy

Habitat for Humanity and its affiliate organizations will not proselytize. Nor will Habitat work with entities or individuals who insist on proselytizing as part of their work with Habitat. This means that Habitat will not offer assistance on the expressed or implied condition that people must adhere to or convert to a particular faith or listen and respond to messaging designed to induce conversion to a particular faith.

How does Habitat for Humanity’s homeownership program work?

Families and individuals in need of decent, affordable housing apply for homeownership with their local Habitat for Humanity.

Each local Habitat’s family selection committee selects homeowners based on three criteria:

      1. The applicant’s level of need.
      2. Their willingness to partner with Habitat.
      3. Their ability to repay a mortgage through an affordable payment plan.

As part of their willingness to partner, Habitat’s homebuyers invest hundreds of hours of their own labor, called sweat equity, working alongside volunteers and other Habitat homeowners.

Sweat equity is a term used often when talking about the creation or building process. It’s about doing the work — the hard work — to bring an idea to life.

That work becomes an investment in the project. It can be an investment as real as money or land.

According to Investopedia, an online financial resource, sweat equity is the “contribution to a project or enterprise in the form of effort and toil. Sweat equity is the ownership interest or increase in value, that is created as a direct result of hard work by the owner(s). It is the preferred mode of building equity for cash-strapped entrepreneurs in their start-up ventures, since they may be unable to contribute much financial capital to their enterprise.”

In his 2009 book If I Had A Hammer: Building Homes and Hope with Habitat for Humanity, David Rubel wrote, “Habitat affiliates require only a small down payment because few low-income families can afford more than that. Instead, partner families are required to contribute sweat equity. The phrase sweat equity refers to an ownership interest created by the sweat of a person’s labor.”

At Habitat for Humanity, sweat equity is a new homeowner investing in their home or one for another family. It’s not a form of payment, but an opportunity to work alongside volunteers who give their time to bring to life a family’s dream of owning a home.

Habitat for Humanity follows a nondiscriminatory policy of family selection. Neither race nor religion is a factor in choosing Habitat’s homeowners.

Are Habitat for Humanity houses free?

No. Families who are in need of decent, affordable housing apply locally to Habitat for Humanity for homeownership. Their ability to repay an affordable mortgage or small loan, as well as their level of housing need and willingness to partner with Habitat, are among the selection criteria for becoming a Habitat homeowner.

Future homeowners receive financial education and complete several hundred hours of sweat equity working alongside volunteers.

Sweat equity can take the form of building their own and other Habitat homes, providing retail assistance at a local Habitat ReStore, or performing important tasks at their local Habitat office.

Learn more about what it takes to become a Habitat homeowner.

To carry out our vision, we partner with individuals and families from application through construction to when the keys are handed over.

By working with us from beginning to end, we can help prospective individuals prepare for the various responsibilities of homeownership, including learning about personal finances, mortgages, maintenance and upkeep of homes, and much more.

Habitat’s path to homeownership is an important and in-depth process, requiring hard work, time and dedication. But this helps to ensure the long-term success of Habitat homeowners.

How to qualify for a Habitat home

Habitat homeowners must be active participants in building a better home and future for themselves and their families.

Every Habitat home is an investment. For us, it is one answer to a critical need, and we believe that stronger homes will create stronger communities.

      1. Prospective Habitat homeowners must demonstrate a need for safe, affordable housing. Need will vary from community to community.

      2. Once selected, Habitat homeowners must partner with us throughout the process. This partnership includes performing “sweat equity,” or helping to build their own home or the homes of others in our homeownership program. Sweat equity can also include taking homeownership classes or performing volunteer work in a Habitat ReStore.

      3. Homeowners must also be able and willing to pay an affordable mortgage. Mortgage payments are cycled back into the community to help build additional Habitat houses.

Can anyone apply to be a Habitat homeowner?

Yes. Habitat follows a nondiscriminatory policy of homebuyer selection. Neither race nor religion is a factor.

How do you apply for a Habitat house?

How long is the Habitat for Humanity home application process?

Habitat’s homeowner selection is managed at the local level, through our hundreds of local Habitat for Humanity locations all over the U.S. and around the world.

For more information and to learn more about the process or how you can apply, please contact your local Habitat, or call 1-800-HABITAT (1-800-422-4828).

Did former U.S. President Jimmy Carter start Habitat for Humanity?

While President and Mrs. Carter are Habitat’s most famous volunteers and have worked tirelessly since 1984 to help families build houses and to raise awareness of the need for affordable housing, Habitat was founded by Millard and Linda Fuller in 1976.

The idea that became Habitat for Humanity first grew from the fertile soil of Koinonia Farm, a community farm outside of Americus, Georgia, founded by farmer and biblical scholar Clarence Jordan.

There in the early ’70s, Jordan and the Fullers developed “partnership housing.”

The idea centered on those in need of adequate shelter working side by side with volunteers to build decent, affordable houses at no profit.

To build more homes, new homeowners’ house payments would be combined with no-interest loans provided by supporters and money earned by fundraising.

In 1973, the Fullers took the concept to Zaire, now the Democratic Republic of Congo, and launched a successful house-building program. After three years, they returned to the United States and founded Habitat for Humanity International.

Millard Fuller

Habitat for Humanity co-founder

“I see life as both a gift and a responsibility. My responsibility is to use what God has given me to help his people in need.”―Millard FullerCo-founder of Habitat for Humanity InternationalMillard Fuller co-founded Habitat for Humanity International in 1976 along with his wife, Linda Fuller, and served in executive roles until 2005.In 1996, former U.S. President Bill Clinton awarded Fuller the Presidential Medal of Freedom—the nation’s highest civilian honor—calling Habitat “…the most successful continuous community service project in the history of the United States.”Mr. Fuller died in February 2009 at the age of 74.A life changedFrom humble beginnings in Alabama, Millard Fuller rose to become a young, self-made millionaire at age 29. But as his business prospered, his health, integrity, and marriage suffered. These crises prompted Fuller to re-evaluate his values and direction. His soul-searching led to reconciliation with his wife and to a renewal of his Christian commitment.The Fullers then took a drastic step: they decided to sell all of their possessions, give the money to the poor and begin searching for a new focus for their lives. This search led them to Koinonia Farm, a Christian community located near Americus, Georgia, where people were looking for practical ways to apply Christ’s teachings.Testing the modelIn 1973, Fuller moved to Africa with his wife and four children to test their housing model. The housing project, which they began in Zaire, now the Democratic Republic of the Congo, was a success in that developing nation.Upon his return to the United States in 1976, he met with a group of close associates and created a new independent organization: Habitat for Humanity International. From 1976 to 2005, the Fullers devoted their energies to the expansion of Habitat for Humanity throughout the world.

Linda Fuller

Habitat for Humanity co-founder

“To families in seemingly impossible situations, Habitat for Humanity becomes a friend and partner. And, by their own labor and with God’s grace, they become owners of a decent home.”― Linda FullerCo-founder of Habitat for Humanity InternationalLinda Fuller and her husband Millard Fuller launched Habitat for Humanity International in 1976. Prior to this, she pioneered a low-cost housing program in rural southwest Georgia from 1968-1972 and participated in three years of similar work in Africa.

Early years

While Linda was earning her degree in elementary education at Huntingdon College in Montgomery, Alabama, Millard began a marketing firm with a fellow attorney.

The business prospered and soon the Fullers were millionaires. But with success and wealth, their marriage suffered. This crisis prompted the Fullers to re-evaluate their lives.

 

Habitat for Humanity International is formed

With Koinonia founder Clarence Jordan and a few others, the Fullers initiated several partnership enterprises, including a housing ministry. Soon, the Fullers began testing a new no-profit, no-interest housing model making homes affordable to families with low incomes.

In 1973 they tested this model in Zaire, now the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and were convinced the model could be expanded and applied all over the world.

Upon their return home in 1976, the Fullers met with members of the Koinonia community and several people from across the United States and decided to create a new, independent organization: Habitat for Humanity International.

From 1976 to 2005, the Fullers devoted their energies to the expansion of Habitat throughout the world.

 

Women in construction

A group of women at Habitat for Humanity’s international headquarters launched Women Accepting the Challenge of Housing.

Eight years and 200 houses later, Linda spearheaded the formation of the Women Build program at Habitat.

Since 1991, Women Build volunteers from all walks of life have come together to build stronger, safer communities.

Though our neighborhoods are comprised largely of women and children, they are also the population’s most likely to be affected by poor living conditions. Our Women Build events provide the opportunity for women to take a proactive step in serving their communities.

Women Build opportunities are available across the U.S., and any woman who wants to learn how to build and construct a home is invited to join us. No experience is necessary. Volunteers work under the guidance of construction professionals, and also alongside other volunteers and future Habitat homeowners.

Whether you are learning new skills or simply adding a few to your tool belt, this is a rewarding experience for all involved and improves the community that you share.

Women Build is also a terrific way to involve your friends and family of all ages in crucial work with a lasting impact. Women helping women sends a positive and powerful message.

You can also come alone, and make new friends. The atmosphere is collaborative and friendly.

Does Habitat for Humanity only build houses?

Habitat is committed to ensuring that everyone, everywhere, has a decent place to live. To that end, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. We help families build strength, stability, and self-reliance through shelter in a variety of ways.

      1. Habitat does build new homes. We also work alongside families to rehabilitate and preserve existing homes needing repairs, and we partner with older homeowners to make the changes they need in order to grow old safely in their homes.
      2. Our neighborhood revitalization work in the U.S. seeks to transform communities into vibrant, safe places to live for current and future residents. Habitat works locally in coalition with neighborhood residents and partners to improve quality of life through an integrated, collaborative approach to community development.
      3. Most of the world’s people acquire shelter incrementally, building homes step by step as their families grow and as their limited finances allow. The great majority of families in countries where Habitat for Humanity works have no access to formal-sector housing options, such as traditional mortgage products or developer-built housing. Our housing microfinance effortshelp fill that enormous gap by empowering people to build better, more durable homes through a combination of capital and housing support services.
    1.  

What is microfinance?

Microfinance loans have relatively short repayment periods, small loan amounts and little or no collateral required. They may be provided by a bank, non-bank financial institution, cooperative, non-government organization or other legal-regulated entities.

What is housing microfinance?

Like traditional microfinance, housing microfinance has the ability to drastically improve the living conditions of low-income families around the world.

Housing microfinance consists of small, non-mortgage backed loans starting at just a few hundred dollars that can be offered to low-income populations in support of incremental building practices.

What is the incremental building?

Building a home in progressive — or incremental — stages is a common practice in much of the developing world, constituting 50 to 90 percent of residential construction. By slowly saving money under mattresses or in jars, people collect building materials to gradually expand and improve their homes.

Improvements can mean adding a concrete or tile floor, shoring up the roof, improving the kitchen or supplementing living space when welcoming a new child to the family.

How can housing microfinance make a difference?

Efforts to provide new housing in the developing world are limited, and existing bankers and lenders rarely serve lower-income people.

Housing microfinance, bundled with housing support services and technical assistance, has the ability to increase access to safer, healthier and less impoverished living conditions and can help speed up the construction of adequate housing.

Habitat’s role in microfinance institution partnerships

Habitat does not issue microfinance loans itself but collaborates with partner microfinance institutions through its MicroBuild Fund.

Other services that Habitat is involved in include:

        1. Program design assistance: Assists in establishing a housing loan product.
        2. Technical assistance: Assists in construction services. Helps link families or clients financed by a microfinance institute to government land, infrastructure or subsidy provided by a Habitat national program.
        3. Direct investing: Transfers grants for research or loans for product rollout to microfinance institutes.
        4. Investment brokering: Involved in negotiations that encourage public and private investment in microfinance institutes to expand housing finance.
        5. Credit service outsourcing: Extends loans that are managed by microfinance institutes to serve Habitat partner families, clients and beneficiaries.

Terwilliger Center for Innovation

Through the Terwilliger Center for Innovation in Shelter, we are able to support local firms and expand innova­tive and client-responsive services, products and financing so that households can improve their shelter more effectively and efficiently.

Habitat for Humanity formally launched the Terwilliger Center for Innovation in Shelter at the historic Habitat III, which took place in Quito, Ecuador, in October 2016.

The Terwilliger Center is one of Habitat’s key commitments toward the implementation of the United Nation’s member states’ New Urban Agenda.

The Terwilliger Center consolidates more than a decade of experience in developing market-based solutions for housing and the body of work resulting from these early efforts, formerly referred to as the Center for Innovation in Shelter and Finance.

Through the Terwilliger Center, Habitat will accelerate and facilitate better functioning inclusive housing markets to enable more than 8 million people to access to improved shelter solutions by 2020.

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Our guiding principles

Strive for scale to reach many families

Market-based approaches can achieve large-scale impact because of the ability to self-replicate successful business models.

The ambition to achieve large-scale change does not mean interventions themselves have to be large in terms of resources. Small test projects to determine if a product can be sustained are perfectly valid.

Sustainability

Lasting solutions come from strengthening the abilities of every company and market actor we work with, ensuring the solution is aligned with market incentives.

In other words, the business delivering the product is able to recover its costs and generate some profit on top, and the product is affordable.

Focus on the private sector

We take a positive attitude toward the role of the private sector in affordable housing, recognizing that the cement companies, contractors, equipment suppliers, banks and other actors play an important role and that profits can drive the incentive to expand services.

Avoid market distortion

We favor the use of indirect subsidies that promote lasting solutions that will continue to benefit households after our intervention.

Direct subsidies that cannot be depended upon or that the market might orient itself around are avoided because of the danger of distorting the housing market.

Act as a facilitator

Our role is to be catalytic, stimulating changes in a market system without becoming part of it.

Our team provides advisory services and technical assistance to market actors and companies to support their abilities to help low-income households obtain affordable housing while remaining external to the housing market.

Our strategy

 

MicroBuild Fund: Mobilizing capital to the housing sector

Directing investment capital to the housing sector is an important part of ensuring that there is an adequate supply of housing products and related services in the market.

Housing products and services: Facilitating and advising housing market actors

We address both the supply and demand sides of the market when we advise firms who are considering introducing housing products or services.

Publications and videos: Advancing the knowledge of housing markets

We are committed to furthering the understanding around key trends in housing finance for low-income populations.

      1. Habitat actively mobilizes volunteers to promote decent, affordable housing and advocates for additional access to safe and affordable housing. Our advocacy work has the proven ability to change laws and shape the policies and systems that affect that access.
      2. Habitat ReStores are an important arm of our work. These home improvement stores sell to the public new and gently used furniture, appliances, home accessories, building materials and other items. Individuals and companies support ReStores by donating or buying items. Proceeds go to support Habitat’s mission in the local community and around the world.

Does Habitat for Humanity only build locally?

Habitat builds in local communities across all 50 states in the U.S. We also work in more than 70 countries worldwide.

Learn more about all of the places where we work.

Can only Christians apply for Habitat homes?

Can only Christians volunteer and work with Habitat?

Habitat is a global nonprofit, ecumenical Christian housing organization. While our mission is inspired by Christian teachings, all who desire to be a part of our work are welcome — without regard to religious preference or background.

Do I have to have construction skills to volunteer with Habitat for Humanity?

We welcome people with any skill level to volunteer with us on the build site, even beginners.

On-site construction leaders train volunteers in all aspects of building.

You do have to be at least 16 years old to work on a Habitat construction site.

You can also volunteer and participate in a variety of other ways, from becoming an advocate to helping out in one of our ReStores.

Check out all of the ways you can support Habitat’s work.

Does Habitat need donations?

Yes, Habitat for Humanity needs donations to advance our work, and we appreciate your financial support.

Thanks to the support of people like you we are able to help millions of people each year as they create strength, stability and self-reliance through shelter. It will take all of us doing whatever we can to create a world where everyone has a decent place to live.

MISSISSIPPI CAPITAL AREA, HFH (MS)

PO Box 55634

JacksonMS 39296-5634 United States

Fuller Center for Housing

THE VISION CONTINUES

In January of 2005,

Millard and Linda Fuller were fired from the organization they founded and nurtured for 29 years.

Rather than dwelling on the end of a career, Fuller immediately began planning for the next phase of his life’s work.

In April 2005, he and Linda and a group of like-minded partners founded the Fuller Center for Housing. 

This new organization provided a vehicle for Fuller to continue striving towards the goal of eliminating poverty housing

Millard Fuller was the founder and former president of Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI).
 
His 29-year leadership, beginning in 1976, forged Habitat into a worldwide Christian housing ministry, building 200,000 homes with projects in 100 countries.
 
He passed away on Feb. 3, 2009, at the age of 74.
 
He was laid to rest at Koinonia Farm in Americus, Ga., the birthplace of Habitat and The Fuller Center, and the home of his former mentor, Clarence Jordan.
 
Fuller spent decades traveling and speaking worldwide, and earned international recognition for his work advocating decent, affordable housing for all.
 
In September 1996, former President Bill Clinton awarded Fuller the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor.
 
Clinton said, “Millard Fuller has done as much to make the dream of homeownership a reality in our country and throughout the world as any living person.”
 
Jack Kemp, former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development and former HFHI board member agreed, adding, “When I’m asked about housing success stories from our inner cities, the first group that comes to mind is Habitat for Humanity.”
 
Shortly after Fuller’s death, Former President Jimmy Carter issued a statement in which he called Fuller “one of the most extraordinary people I have ever known.
 
“He used his remarkable gifts as an entrepreneur for the benefit of millions of needy people around the world by providing them with decent housing,” Carter said in the statement.
 
“As the founder of Habitat for Humanity and later the Fuller Center, he was an inspiration to me, other members of our family and an untold number of volunteers who worked side-by-side under his leadership.”
 
And in June 2009, both branches of the United States Congress, the House of Representatives and the Senate, passed resolutions to honor Fuller.
 
The House of Representatives resolution states (in part):“Celebrating the life of Millard Fuller, a life which provides all the evidence one needs to believe in the power of the human spirit to inspire hope and lift the burdens of poverty and despair from the shoulders of one’s fellow man.”
 
Click here for Millard’s biography  with links to his awards, books, sermons and more.
 
Click here for Linda’s biography.

 

Foundational principles

We at the Fuller Center for Housing believe that: We are part of a God movement, and movements don’t just stop.
 
We have been called to this housing ministry; we didn’t just stumble into it.
 
We are unashamedly Christian, and enthusiastically ecumenical.
 
We aren’t a church but we are a servant of the Church.
 
We are faith driven, knowing that after we’ve done all we can do the Lord will help finish the job — something that requires us to stretch beyond our rational reach.
 
We are a grass-roots ministry, recognizing that the real work happens on the ground in communities around the world through our covenant partners, so a large, overseeing bureaucracy isn’t needed.
 
We try to follow the teachings of the Bible and believe that it says that we shouldn’t charge interest of the poor, so we don’t.
 
Government has a role in our work in helping set the stage, but that we shouldn’t look to it as a means to fund the building of the home.
 
The Fuller Center for Housing is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that seeks to eradicate poverty housing by promoting partnerships with individuals and community groups to build and rehabilitate homes for people in need.
 
 
The United Nations estimates that more than one billion people around the world live in substandard housing — including millions in the United States.
 
The Fuller Center for Housing, faith-driven, and Christ-centered, promotes collaborative and innovative partnerships with individuals and organizations in an unrelenting quest to provide adequate shelter for all people in need worldwide.
 
 
The Fuller Center creates partnerships within communities that bring together churches, schools, businesses and civic organizations to build decent, affordable homes in partnership with people who are unable to secure adequate housing by conventional means.
 
The Fuller Center works in collaboration with our covenant partners, other service-oriented organizations and countless volunteers to build and repair homes.
 
All homeowners work hand-in-hand with volunteers to build their own homes, which are then sold to them on terms they can afford, based on the Biblical idea of no-profit, no-interest loans.
 
With some smaller renovation projects, an innovative payment program called The Greater Blessing Program is utilized, whereby recipients promise to repay the loan amount without signing an actual mortgage agreement. They decide the monthly amount they can afford to repay and the period of time that it will take to repay the cost of repairs.
 
There is no legal obligation to repay these loans. It is a leap of faith in the basic goodness of humankind and is proving to be very successful.
 
We are committed to good stewardship and work hard to keep our administrative costs low and to select our recipient families wisely.
 
This helps to ensure that the vast majority of your tax-deductible gifts go toward building and repairing homes for those in need.
 
 
Since launching in 2005, The Fuller Center has spanned the globe and now has covenant partners in more than 70 U.S. communities and 20 countries.
 
Growth continues at a rapid pace as groups from new communities contact us every week about forming partnerships.
 
 
The Fuller Center goes where it is asked to help.
 
We partner with local community leaders and organizations because they know who has the greatest needs in their area.
 
We do not “plant” partners or parachute into communities on our own.
 
 
Covenant partners are local organizations that sign an agreement with The Fuller Center to work in partnership to build or renovate houses for families in need in a particular area.
 
While a connection with The Fuller Center is of great help to local organizations in terms of expertise, information sharing, training, funding, and name recognition, the real work takes place at the local level where funds are raised, volunteers are mobilized, families are selected and nurtured and houses are built or rehabilitated.
 
 
All decisions about family selection are managed by the board of directors of each local covenant partner. Income requirements vary from community to community.
 
However, there are three basic criteria that everyone uses: applicant need (can’t qualify for conventional loans), applicant willingness to partner (“sweat equity” volunteer hours required) and applicant ability to pay the mortgage on their new home or ReNew project or ability to donate through their Greater Blessing project.
 
 
Yes. The Fuller Center is an ecumenical Christian organization that bases its work on what Fuller Center founder Millard Fuller called, “The Economics of Jesus” and “The Theology of the Hammer.”
 
We work in partnership with people around the world, of all faiths and backgrounds, to build God’s Kingdom on earth by improving and transforming lives.
 
 
No. We welcome all volunteers who share our basic belief in giving dignity to all by helping them own a home.
 
We believe Jesus would not want us to place religious requirements on beneficiaries, so we don’t.
 
For example, many of our partner families in Nepal are Hindus, and we work with Buddhists in Sri Lanka and Muslims in Africa.
 
 
Knowing that God is love, and valuing the worth of every human being, The Fuller Center for Housing does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, age, gender, sexual orientation or sexual identity in joyfully welcoming people from all walks of life as volunteers or in selecting beneficiaries for our services.”
 
 
After a successful record of 29 years as founder and President of Habitat for Humanity International, the board of directors decided in 2005 that it was time to part ways with its founder and his wife, Linda, due to major differences, primarily about Habitat’s vision and operating philosophy.
 
Millard, along with Linda, created The Fuller Center to continue their grass-roots and Christ-centered mission of eliminating poverty housing around the world.
 
 
Through the dedication of thousands of committed people around the world, Habitat for Humanity sheltered more than a million people in need during Millard’s time as its leader. Yet, throughout the world, more than 1 billion people continue to live in poverty housing, and 100 million are homeless.
 
Millard’s lifelong mission was to eliminate this shameful situation and he found great joy in his work.
 
His goal was to work as hard as he could for as long as he could. And he did just that, working up until the very last moment before God called him home on Feb. 3, 2009. He died unexpectedly of an aortic aneurysm one month after his 74th birthday.
 
 
There are several ways to become involved. As a tightly-run, cost-conscious organization, we are always in need of people’s time, talents and treasures.
 
Just click on the “Get Involved” button to the right to learn about more unique ways to help this ministry serve others.
 
We have listed just a few of your options below:
 
 
Individuals committed to building homes can join one of The Fuller Center’s upcoming builds taking place in various parts of the country. Find a covenant partner in your area and contact them about ongoing and upcoming projects. No experience is necessary.
 
2. Donate
 
We welcome all donations to fund our programs.
 
Tax-deductible contributions can be mailed to: The Fuller Center for Housing, P.O. Box 523, Americus, GA 31709.
 
You may also make a donation online. In-kind donations of food for volunteers, building materials and services are also greatly appreciated.
 
3. Share the message: 
 
Tell your family, friends, and colleagues about The Fuller Center and its work. Create a fundraising page. Direct people to The Fuller Center’s Web site.
 
Put a bumper sticker on your car or wear a Fuller Center T-shirt.
 
Ask for brochures to pass out at your office or church.
 
 
Prayerfully consider starting a Fuller Center covenant partnership or campus program in your community.
 
For more information, contact our Director of U.S. Covenant Partner Development, Stacey Odom-Driggers at sdriggers @fullercenter.org or give her a call at (229)-924-2900.

LOCATIONS UNITED STATES

Mississippi

Rule 8.9 Escrows and Alternatives Assurances

Timeshares

 

A. In order to protect the purchaser’s right to refund during the rescission period and during any period in which construction of the timeshare property is not complete and available for occupancy by purchasers, the developer shall provide financial assurances as required by this section. A. A developer of a timeshare plan shall deposit into an escrow account in an acceptable escrow depository all funds that are received in Mississippi during the purchaser’s rescission period. An acceptable escrow depository includes banks, trust companies, saving and loans associations, real estate broker trust accounts at such an institution, title insurers, and underwritten title companies. The handling of these funds shall be in accordance with an executed escrow agreement between an escrow agreement between an escrow agent and the developer. Funds will be handled to assure the following:

(1) Funds may be disbursed to the developer by the escrow agent from the escrow account or from the broker trust account only after expiration of the purchaser’s rescission period and in accordance with the purchase contract, subject to paragraph (2) If a prospective purchaser properly cancels the purchase contract following expiration of the cancellation period pursuant to its terms, the funds shall be paid to the prospective purchaser or paid to the developer if the prospective purchaser’s funds have been previously refunded by the developer.

B. If a developer contracts to sell a timeshare interest and the construction of the accommodation in which the timeshare interest being conveyed is located has not been completed, the developer, upon expiration of the rescission period, shall continue to maintain in an escrow account all funds received by or on behalf of the developer from the prospective purchaser under his or her purchase contract.

The Commission shall determine the types of documentation which shall be required for evidence of completion, including, but not limited to, a certificate of occupancy, a certificate of substantial completion, or an inspection by the State Fire Marshal or designee or an equivalent public safety inspection by the appropriate agency in the applicable jurisdiction. Unless the developer submits an alternative financial assurance in accordance with paragraph 3, funds shall not be released from escrow until a certificate of occupancy, or its equivalent, has been obtained and the rescission period has passed, and the timeshare interest can be transferred free and clear of blanket encumbrances, including mechanics’ liens.

Funds to be released from escrow shall be released as follows:

(1) If a prospective purchaser properly cancels the purchase contract pursuant to its terms, the funds shall be paid to the prospective purchaser or paid to the developer if the developer has previously refunded the prospective purchaser’s funds.

(2) If a prospective purchaser defaults in the performance of the prospective purchaser’s obligations under the purchase contract, the funds shall be paid to the developer. (3) If the funds of a prospective purchaser have not been previously disbursed in accordance with the provisions of this paragraph 2., they may be disbursed to the developer by the escrow agent upon the issuance of acceptable evidence of completion of construction and closing.

C In lieu of the provisions in paragraphs 1 and 2, the Commission may accept from the developer a surety bond, escrow bond, irrevocable letter of credit, or other financial assurance or arrangement acceptable to the Commission. Any acceptable financial assurances shall be in an amount equal to or in excess of the lesser of (1) the funds that would otherwise be place in escrow, or (2) in an amount equal to the cost to complete the incomplete property in which the timeshare interest is located. However, in no event shall the amount be less that the amount of funds that would otherwise be placed in escrow pursuant to subparagraph a. of paragraph 1.

D. The developer shall provide escrow account or broker trust account information to the 40 Commission and shall execute in writing an authorization consenting to an audit or examination of the account by the Commission. The developer shall make documents related to the escrow or trust account or escrow obligation available to the Commission upon request.

The escrow agent or broker shall maintain any disputed funds in the escrow account until either of the following occurs:

(1) Receipt of written direction agreed to by signature of all parties.

(2) Deposit of the funds with a court of competent jurisdiction in which a civil action regarding the funds has been filed E. Excluding any encumbrance placed against the purchaser’s timeshare interest securing the purchaser’s payment of purchase money financing for the purchase, the developer shall not be entitled to the release of any funds escrowed under this section J. with respect to each timeshare interest and any other property or rights to property appurtenant to the timeshare interest, including any amenities represented to the purchaser as being part of the timeshare plan, until the developer has provided satisfactory evidence to the Commission of one of the following:

(1) The timeshare Interest together with any other property or rights to property appurtenant to the timeshare interest, including any amenities represented to the purchaser as being part of the timeshare plan, are free and clear of any of the claims of the developer, any owner of the underlying fee, a mortgagee, judgment creditor, or other lien holder, or any other person having an interest in or lien or encumbrance against the timeshare interest or appurtenant property or property rights.

(2) The developer, any owner of the underlying fee, a mortgagee, judgment creditor, or other lien holder, or any other person having an interest in or lien or encumbrance against the timeshare interest or appurtenant property or property rights, including any amenities represented to the purchaser as being part of the timeshare plan, has recorded a subordination and notice to creditors document in the appropriate public records of the jurisdiction in which the timeshare interest is located.

The subordination document shall expressly and effectively provide that the interest holder’s right, lien or encumbrance shall not adversely affect, and shall be subordinate to, the rights of the owners of the timeshare interests in the timeshare plan regardless of the date of purchase.

(3) The developer, any owner of the underlying fee, a mortgagee, judgment creditor, or other lien holder, or any other person having an interest in or lien or encumbrance against the timeshare interest or appurtenant property or property rights, including any amenities represented to the purchaser as being part of the timeshare plan, has transferred the subject accommodations, amenities, or all use rights in the amenities to a nonprofit organization or owners’ association to be held for the use and benefit of the owners of the timeshare plan, which organization or owners association shall act as a fiduciary to the purchasers, and the developer has transferred control of the entity to the owners or does not exercise its voting rights in the entity with respect  to the subject accommodations or amenities:

Prior to the transfer, any lien or other encumbrance against the accommodation or facility shall be made subject to a subordination and notice to creditors, instrument pursuant to subparagraph b. or be free and clear of all liens and encumbrances.

(4) Alternative arrangements have been made which are adequate to protect the rights of the purchasers of the timeshare interests and approved by the Commission.

F. Nothing in this section shall prevent a developer from accessing any escrow funds if the developer has complied with paragraph 3 of this section.

G. The developer shall notify the Commission of the extent to which an accommodation may become subject to a tax or other lien arising out of claims against other purchasers in the same timeshare plan.

H. Developers, sellers, escrow agents, brokers and their employees and agents have a fiduciary duty to purchasers with respect to funds required to be deposited under these rules.

Any Mississippi broker or salesperson who fails to comply with rules concerning the establishment of an escrow or broker trust account, deposits of funds, and property into escrow or withdrawal there from, shall be in violation of the Mississippi Real Estate Brokers Act of 1954, as amended, and the Rules and Regulations of the Commission.

The failure to establish an escrow or trust account or to place funds therein as required under these rules is prima facie evidence of an intentional and purposeful violation.