Wiregrass Newsroom: Habitat for Humanity Holds On, Fulfills Dream

Dothan, AL (WSFA) -- The pounding of the hammer is music to Maria Arcuragi's ears.

A wish, three years in the making, and a holiday gift from Habitat for Humanity.

"I can't wait to move in. I just love my house. This is my dream, yes. I'm going to make this home beautiful," says Arcuragi.

But it's a dream that fewer people are seeing. Rising construction costs and demand is forcing Habitat for Humanity to scale back.

"It's tough. It means that we have to turn a lot of people away even though we really want to help them," says Habitat for Humanity Resource Development Coordinator, Sabrina Kirkland.

It takes $45,000 to build a Habitat home, and this is the seventh one the organizaton has built in 2008. However, Habitat says if they had more donations coming in, they could possibly build between 50-75 homes per year.

"It's more difficult for us as a non-profit organization when people are trying to save or hang on to their money a little bit more because they're unsure of our state," says Kirkland.

Donations aside, Kirkland says Habitat owners have a good track record to carry them through tough economic times.

"We have not had to foreclose on a home ever in the 18 years we have been in this area."

That's a record Maria Arcuragi plans to continue.

"That will be the first thing every month...will be my payment on my house."

And even through hardship, Habitat for Humanity is making a difference.

"That's my Christmas, right here," says Arcuragi.

And it's a difference for one woman who is finally happy to be home.

Reporter: Melissa McKinney