Design and construction of Habitat houses
Habitat houses are built in different styles and in different materials depending on local designs, local weather conditions and local building standards.
See examples of Habitat houses in the Asia-Pacific region―from Afghanistan to Vietnam:
- Homes in the Asia-Pacific Region slideshow (Part 1)
- Homes in the Asia-Pacific Region slideshow (Part 2)
The guiding principles for Habitat homes are the same the world over. They are:
Habitat houses are modestly sized― large enough for the homeowner family’s needs, but small enough to keep construction and maintenance costs to affordable.
Habitat uses quality, locally available building materials. Trained staff supervises Habitat house construction and educates volunteers and partner families.
The labor of volunteers and partner families, efficient building methods, modest house sizes and no-profit, inflation-adjusted, no-interest loans make it affordable for low-income people around the world to purchase a Habitat for Humanity house.
There are real construction challenges in the Asia-Pacific region, reflecting the myriad of geographies and climates.
In Mongolia, for example, homes must withstand temperatures that fall 35° Celsius below freezing (-31° Fahrenheit), yet at an affordable cost.
In the Philippines, medium-rise residential blocks in Taguig City are built with interlocking blocks while the steel frame technology, originally from New Zealand, is used to construct row houses in the typhoon-hit Bicol region.
Bamboo, an indigenous fast-growing plant in Nepal, is used by Habitat to build homes with woven bamboo panels for walls.
Commonly, Habitat houses in Asia-Pacific are made from block, often made by homeowners and timber. Roofing may be corrugated metal sheets or tiling.
Habitat’s house designs reflect the fact that people from different countries use their houses in different ways.
In many parts of India, meals and socializing frequently occur on the porch. Habitat house designs in India reflect this custom.
Habitat for Humanity International is committed to resource- and energy-efficient building practices.
Staff and volunteers are taught to use sustainable construction techniques that conserve natural resources and reduce long-term costs for Habitat homeowners.