If you will hammer, Habitat for Humanity can help you build a low-cost house in Miami

Louetta R. Clark

Melissa Jones, a single mom with four kids, has a good job at a major corporation. But like growing numbers of Miamians, she has struggled with rising rent — and forget about hoping to ever own a home. Or so she thought.

But then she was turned on to Habitat for Humanity, the nonprofit renowned for its hard-nosed “sweat equity” approach to getting low-income families into new homes of their own. These are high-quality houses with low prices, in part because they’re sawed and hammered together by a squad of volunteers and the homeowners themselves.

And so one warm morning last week, Jones found herself on her knees gluing dark wood laminate to the floors of what will soon be her new Habitat home in the south Miami-Dade neighborhood of Goulds. That’s after she spent much of the previous nine days helping to nail down the roof, put up drywall,

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