It’s time to move out into your first home and you’re overwhelmed with how much you have to buy to fill your humble abode.
You’re looking for some antiques or that perfect item to add to your dining room to make it complete.
The Elkin ReStore is the perfect place to visit for either of these situations. The ReStore is a Habitat For Humanity retail outlet that sells gently used furniture, home goods, books, music, hardware and electronics at deep discounts and uses the profits to put under privileged people in low cost, energy efficient homes.
“Habitat is so many different pieces,” Claire Sellars executive director of the Elkin ReStore. “We’re a retail outlet, we’re a construction company, we’re a bank, we’re a social services organization and we just have so many things going on that everyone can feel great doing.”
Sellars said that the ReStore is always looking for working large and small appliances and gently used furniture. The store has volunteers who go out three times a week to pick up larger items from areas in Yadkin County, Elkin, Thurmond, Ronda and even areas in the mountains.
Sellars said that the ReStore directly benefits the Habitat For Humanity program. She said that the Habitat program has built or rehabbed 24 homes in the tri-county area and Yadkin County this year. The program is currently working on a rehab house and will begin another in the spring.
When Habitat restores a home, it purchases it and brings it to and above code and make it more energy efficient to resale to Habitat homeowners.
“Habitat houses are not given away; they’re sold to our partner families with a no profit and no interest loan,” Sellars said. “That’s what it makes it makes it affordable to a low income family.”
Sellars said that Habitat is able to offer low income families a new three bedroom, two bathroom energy efficient home for as low as $460 a month.
Many of these families are coming from homes or apartments in dangerous neighborhoods, mold or other hazardous items in the home, substandard housing or unable to move out of a family member’s home.
Once Habitat staff have determined that the family has a need for the home they determine their ability to pay.
“We are checking to make sure the families will be able to make those regular monthly mortgage payments,” Sellars said. “We’re setting up a partnership that’s going to last 20 to 30 years so we want to see that the family is in a position where they will be able to pay for the house.”
Sellars said that the Habitat board will perform a credit check to make sure that the family has a history of paying their bills but they will not be looking for a perfect credit history.
“We have an income range and our families earn 30 to 60 percent of the median income of the county,” Sellars said. “Those are people that have decent, honest, good jobs but they’re not good enough to go to the bank and get a loan.”
The Habitat board is also looking for a Habitat applicant’s willingness to partner. This means that the Habitat homeowner will be expected to assist with their own home’s construction or rehab and will also help with another family’s home.
They are also expected to assist with fundraisers or other events sponsored by Habitat and ReStore.
Finally, homeowners will also be expected to develop a working knowledge of managing their finances and their new home.
“They will attend homeowner training classes where they will learn about budgeting, credit management, maintenance and things like that,” Sellars said.
Habitat For Humanity and ReStore are not only looking for families to fill their homes but also for volunteers to fill their jobs at ReStore and to help build homes. They accept both volunteer groups and individuals.
“In the store we are always looking for volunteers to clean furniture, tidy up, help give customers assistance, help with pricing and it’s always wonderful when we get someone who is able to move large items or help customers load their purchases,” Sellars said.
Habitat For Humanity is also always looking for people willing to help on the construction sites of their homes.
“It’s a great place to work,” Sellars said. “It’s fun to be a part of Habitat because you’re changing people’s lives whether you’re dusting furniture or swinging a hammer or handing out water bottles at our race you are really and truly making a difference in someone’s life and you’re having fun while you’re doing it.”
The Elkin ReStore is located at 102 E. Market St., Elkin. Store hours areTuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The store can be contacted at 336.526.4663.
Reach Lindsay Craven at 679-2341 or at email@example.com.