Donate a Car…Build a Home

Maybe you’d love to donate some of your time to Habitat for Humanity because you believe in the work they do, building affordable homes for low-income families, but you don’t have enough time to spare. On the other hand, maybe you have a used vehicle that you need to part with. In that case, both you and Habitat for Humanity are in luck.

Their national “Cars for Homes” program has created a win-win situation, with Habitat for Humanity able to accept donations of cars, trucks, boats, motorcycles, RVs and other vehicles. They then sell the vehicles through automobile auctions, recyclers or salvage yards to raise money that helps in the construction of homes, said Maureen Clary, executive director of Habitat for Humanity St. Tammany West.

Funds generated from the sale of the vehicles benefits the local Habitat where the donation is made. The Cars for Homes program began in fall 2003 in the Seattle area, and since that time the sales have raised over $10.5 million dollars for families in need.

“We have always had individuals donate cars, boats and RVs,” Clary said. “However, our affiliate would have to handle the pickup, do the title transfer, and attempt to resell the donated items locally. This program makes it much easier on both the donor and HFHSTW as the recipient.”

Since Habitat for Humanity International is a nonprofit organization, it may be possible for donors to claim deductions on their income tax returns, if they itemize. In general, donors can deduct the fair market value of any car up to $499. If it sells for more than $500, the full price can be deducted.

The kicker is, “The tax deduction is often more than what they could sell the vehicle for,” Clary said, “and they know that their donation will go towards eliminating substandard housing in local communities.


Habitat for Humanity International’s Cars for Homes program reaches $10 million milestone

ATLANTA (June 7, 2011)Habitat for Humanity’s Cars for Homes program has distributed more than $10 million to Habitat affiliates since the program’s inception in 2003.

Habitat’s Cars for Homes has helped fund the construction of Habitat homes like the one pictured above in Mobile, Ala.
Read related Habitat World blog post

Cars for Homes is Habitat for Humanity’s national vehicle donation program that provides donors a quick and easy process for donating cars, trucks, boats, RVs and other vehicles to help build homes in partnership with local low-income families in need of decent, affordable shelter.

“We are very pleased to have reached this major milestone with the Cars for Homes program,” said Marcia Rundle, the director of the program. “Thanks to our generous donors, Habitat affiliates have been able to use the funds earned from the recycling of used and idle vehicles to help address affordable housing needs in their communities.”

The Cars for Homes program began in the state of Washington in November 2003 as a pilot program. In 2005, it was approved as a national program of Habitat for Humanity International. The Cars for Homes program was created specifically to assist Habitat affiliates by generating funding from the sale of donated vehicles. Revenue is distributed to affiliates based on the zip code of the donor.

More than 1,100 Habitat affiliates nationwide and five Habitat national offices around the world have received funding from the program.

To learn more about Cars for Homes, visit: .


About Habitat for Humanity International
Habitat for Humanity International is an ecumenical Christian ministry that welcomes to its work all people dedicated to the cause of eliminating poverty housing. Since its founding in 1976, Habitat has built, rehabilitated, repaired or improved more than 400,000 houses worldwide, providing simple, decent and affordable shelter for more than two million people. For more information, or to donate or volunteer, visit



View a slideshow of donated vehicles here


Changing the world…One nail at a time

Written by guest blogger: Sarah T., a recent Habitat for Humanity, Cars for Homes volunteer.

Charity, the practice of benevolent giving and caring

We are all changing the world we live in every day. Whether that’s for better or worse depends on our actions. Recently I was given the chance to do some good by contributing to other people in a meaningful way. I was part of a group that worked on building a home for a family in need through Habitat for Humanity.

One of the most valuable things you can give someone is your time. Did it matter that I didn’t know what a “blue board” was? Not in the least. I was there, and I was ready to give my time & energy into this project. That’s not to say that there weren’t a few bumps along the way.

As a cake decorator, I can honestly say I have never held a power tool in my hand before that day. When the screw just would not, and I mean would not, go into the wall, I exclaimed “Don’t you know I work in frosting, not power tools!” (In case you were wondering, the drill was on reverse) The professional construction worker supervising us was extremely patient & enormously helpful, leading us through the fog of first-time construction work.

We had an eventful day of dry walling the upstairs of the house. It was full of dust from the walls, measuring, drilling and a few scrapes along the way. But when we were finished, I looked around and instead of beams and emptiness, saw the beginning of rooms to a home. A new future for a family who really needed an act of charity from their neighbors.

I have hope that something good comes from such a simple thing as a house. It’s funny how helping others can make us feel. It’s a feeling that’s hard to describe; a sense of fulfillment, a happiness that you can’t get from anything else. It puts a smile on your face and lightness in your heart.

There’s something hardwired into all of us that makes us feel like a million bucks when we are kind and when we are giving, and my experience was no different.


Cars for Homes New Jersey Roadtrip

This week, Cars for Homes kicked off its Northern New Jersey Road trip, celebrating what vehicle donations can build in Bergen, Morris, Newark, and Paterson counties. Cars for Homes is an incredible program from Habitat for Humanity, which effectively takes your donated vehicle and helps create decent, affordable housing for families in need. Your donated vehicle will either be recycled into steel for future cars or building materials or sold at auction, the proceeds of which both go towards creating energy efficient, cost effective homes for family’s living in inadequate or substandard housing.

The road trip that Cars for Homes and Advanced Remarketing Services, Inc. participated in started in Summit, New Jersey where we assisted in the building of six handicapped-accessible condominiums. Wednesday, May 4th found us in West Orange, NJ, just outside Newark, building a two family house. Thursday May 5th, we’re helping trim and hang doors on four energy-efficient condominium units. Friday the 6th of May, we are working on weatherizing a single family home in Paterson, NJ. Saturday, May 7th, we hope that the 4th annual “Wheels and Deals” celebration at the Morris Habitat for Humanity ReStore will see many donated vehicles to help finish the projects in progress and fund future home building in the Northern New Jersey area.

Irina the Homeowner (left) with Blair Bravo, Executive Director at Morris Habitat for Humanity

Join us in reaching our goal of $100,000 by donating your car to a Northern New Jersey affiliate through the Cars for Homes Program. Until June 30th, Cars for Homes will even match the gross sales price of your vehicle 1 to 1. That means that with every car donation to a Northern NJ affiliate, you double your contribution to helping build affordable housing projects in New Jersey.

What will you build?

Start your car donation now!


Saturday Wheels and Deals Blitz

102 Iron Mountain Road

Mine Hill, NJ 07803


View coverage from the Alternative Press here

View coverage from the Summit Patch here


Cars for Homes program builds in Mobile

Work begins on first house in the area

(Click Image to View the Video Cars for Homes, Mobile, AL)

MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – Construction is underway for the first Cars for Homes house in southwest Alabama.

Habitat for Humanity Chief Executive Officer Brenda Lawless said the program raises funds from recycled cars to build homes for those in need.

“Its amazing over 2 million dollars a year in car donations, RV’s, trucks, trailers and anything on four wheels that can be hauled off has raised money for this program to build houses,” said Lawless.

Lawless called on this program when they lost funding from another source to build a home that was already in the works. She said she thought it was a long shot.

“We never thought that we would be able to get funding for a whole house through this program and that’s what happened,” said Lawless.

A house that will soon be a home to the Tukka family. The family does not speak English so Lemech Change translates for them.

“Its kind of exciting having come from a background where they didn’t have anything they could really call a home for themselves. It’s kind of really exciting and a new start for them,” said Change.

In the year that the family has been in the Habitat for Humanity program, they have spent hours working toward their own home. It’s called sweat equity. The moment they step into their new home, it will all be worth it.

“That will be the best part of it. That the work is done and the house is done and they now can settle down and that will be the moment that the family, that habitat has helped to put in a home,” said Change.

Habitat hopes this program will help lower the number of people without homes.

“This is another way that folks can contribute to Habitat for Humanity and help serve the families by donating an old vehicle that you would get rid of by another means,” said Lawless.

Program representatives from all over the country will be at the site in Hillsdale on Wednesday, April 13. They welcome everyone to come out and learn more about the Cars for Homes program.

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