Spartanburg Rebuilt Project
The County of Spartanburg was the recipient of HOME Partnership grant funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Having access to these funds, Spartanburg Partnership Rebuilds program partnered with Neighborhood Housing.
A grant for nearly $433,000 was presented to assist with the demolition and reconstruction, of four (4) owner occupied homes, owned by low income families.
The following properties were included in this program: 22 Pine Street, 105 and 229 Southern Ave. and 641 Washington Way –all in Spartanburg County.
The process for the home owners to qualify was arduous. The County of Spartanburg verified that these homes had fallen into such disrepair that rehabilitation was not an option. The home owners were required to sign over their property and home to the HOME program in exchange for a deferred-forgivable loan(*). The home had to be (close to) paid up, as the grant budget per home could not afford to cover an eventual mortgage. Income Eligibility was based on “Section 8” as defined by HUD.
Neighborhood Housing met with home owners to have their input as to things like colors, materials, and any necessary changes to the approved plans.
Neighborhood Housing assisted home owners with inventorying personal items and furniture to be stored during building period. The home owners were temporarily housed in safe and comfortable Extended Stay facilities(*) until homes were completed.
Likewise support was given as “moving in” day finally came about an all were grateful.
Needless to say, all homeowners were pleased with their new and attractive homes.
However, one homeowner stands out for all who met her. Ms. Fannie, age 85, had lived in her home in Una (Spartanburg) neighborhood almost 50 years. Sadly, after her husband’s death, she could not afford repairs. The home was falling in on her, causing mold everywhere and little protection from the elements-especially rain, utility bills reaching ridiculous levels for lack of proper insulation, holes in both unleveled floors or falling-in ceilings... A dialysis patient three times a week, she desperately needed a place where she could safely and comfortably set in after each of her trips to the hospital, and, still to date, she cannot believe her beautiful new home.
In her own words, and to summarize her bliss: “No more buckets!” Mission accomplished.
(*) The program was so designed that Neighborhood Housing was covering all the expenses incurred by owners from beginning to end, such as moving expenses, storage building for the duration of the rebuild, extended stay in a hotel facility.
Finally, in the end, home owner takes back ownership of their home with a new “mortgage” in the form of a 0% forgivable loan. A forgivable loan is such a loan that you do not repay as long as you stay in that house for the duration of the loan.
How would you like for your church or organization to be part of such a wonderful, difference-making program? Contact us and find out how you could, through your sponsoring, change the life of an upstate resident, or family.
Our projects include new builds, renovations, rehabs, and rebuilds. We also have some plans for future fundraisers in the works.
We would like to share our very latest project with the online community, near and far, and publish the “step-by-step” evolution of our current renovation project in Greer. This will give us a chance to not only proudly share what we do… ALL that we do in the homes that we get involved with, but also give a shout out to our multiple partners who commit to helping us along the way. We just hope you appreciate the idea and enjoy the experience. And who knows, maybe this is something you too have thought of doing in the past but never knew how or where to start… Well…, now you do!!
So, without any further adieu, let me introduce this beautiful and huge (2,600+ sqft) 3 bedrooms, 2 and a half baths, sitting on a 0.4+ acre cul-de-sac lot. Among the features, a massive bonus room over the 2-car garage, 2 sets of stairways for an amazing flow through the house, a large kitchen with a very practical island, 400 sqft of living room lit and warmed by a fire in the winter, a nice screen porch overlooking the back yard to keep an eye on the kids…
Yes, it is a bit of a teaser, and you will not get the full information until we’re done changing all 24 windows, all flooring, repainting, upgrading all light fixtures and hardware throughout, and installing granite counter-tops…
Then only it will be ready for your eyes to come see.
This is the first step of any renovation project, once you have completed the picking and acquiring steps is almost always to do a deep walk in and make the decision as to what stays, and what goes. And with it comes the most fun time of all such projects: the demo and prepping for the jobs to come.
In our case, everything in the house was a little dated, and had a strong gold accent (lights, knobs, hinges, etc.) and we knew it all had to go. Kitchen counter-tops were as plain as they come, and really did not do the place and space any justice, so that too had to go. Most of the wood work around the house (trims, doors, rails…) was a brown stained wood color that we also wanted to be gone and replaced with a “shiny” pure and clean white. Ceiling fans were old and had most definitely seen better days, so . . . Gone!! Same with the window blinds and any such wall ornaments, mirrors, etc.
Right now you’re all thinking: “Whoop-tee-doo… That’s really not a big deal!!”, and I’d agree, we’ve seen and done a lot worse, on much bigger scale. However, when you go home tonight, walk around and picture yourself taking down every door, every set of hinges off (that’s usually 3 a door) along with knobs, every light fixture, all the switches and plugs (who will now all have to match in that shiny pure white look), all the hardware in your bathrooms (TP dispensers, towel racks), and you’ll soon realize that all those little things seriously can add up, just like everything else in our lives!
Thank God though, we got some help: the weekend of April 28th/29th, a husband and wife and 3 of their kids came over and volunteered to help with that big and important part (important because it sets the décor for the rest of the project, for your upcoming crews, it makes their work faster, easier, and keeps your costs low). Honestly, we would not yet be talking paint if they had not been there to help, and I think everyone had a really good time working as a family/team!!
NOW, THE “BAD NEWS” IS . . . each and every one of these knobs, hinges, lights and all…, they will all have to be replaced and basically re-hung once the work is complete, or nearing completion.
I’m sure I can reach out to that family and offer them to help again, but some of those kids were fairly young, and I will trust them more with take down than put up type of activities. So… if you feel in your heart that this is something you and your kids, significant other, colleagues, team mates, church family would be up for, by all means, do not hesitate to contact us:
Alyce@nhcgreenville.org or (864) 631-2041
(Note: as you will also see on these pictures, if you look at them all, we “proud” ourselves in trying to recycle and find a new life to every item we can salvage by donating what we can to either Habitat, Miracle Hills, or Goodwill)
Step 2: Rule of thumb, when you work on a renovation, if you plan on doing it right, you will at least have to repaint the whole house, as well as change most of the flooring. The key to a smooth renovation is to be able to line up your different jobs and crews correctly, so they can go in the proper sequence.
For instance, your painters will thank you for letting them in before the flooring so they can be much faster by not having to protect and watch for spills… Easy, right?
In our case, we knew our biggest and most complicated job would be changing all 24 windows. And we knew they had to be installed first. So we made them our step 2, following our light demo and prepping.
What we had not anticipated though, were the many different sizes around the house, with only 2 regular ones stocked at places such as Lowe's or Home Depot. So we had to get them specially made, which ended up being a great story, working with amazing local people and company: Taylors Window and Screen, right here in Greenville. OK, so I'll admit, going for the big box distributor, buying their products from wherever they were made has its perks, like convenience, in this case. But none of them can give you the service these guys will give you, or make you feel like they will.
Sure, we had to wait for measuring, and then a few weeks, for proper manufacturing delay, but the service provided by Taylors Windows Mark, Karla Nichols, or their daughter Katelyn Nichols was surreal. First (and I know it's because of our non-profit status), they threw in all the insulating foam along with the coil and supplies for the wrapping of the windows. But the real beauty was when they promptly fixed, overnight, a window that fell and shattered when we were unloading them.
You guys rocked!! And our upstate is full of such companies, people and surprises…!! Sometimes you just have to see the opportunity where you thought you had an issue.