Virtual Visit: Band-Aid Fixes

Let’s go on a virtual home visit. In this blog post, we’ll use a combination of before and after photos along with a narrative to demonstrate repairs and their impact.

Have you heard the phrase, putting a Band-Aid on a broken bone? 

In our line of work, we see things like plywood laid on top of a rotting floor. We see garbage bags taped over broken windows. We see ovens used as heat sources.

For many low-income homeowners, what may seem like a Band-Aid fix, is actually the only option. As lumber prices rise to historic highs, it’s even harder for low-income families to keep up with repairs financially. For others, physical maintenance isn’t possible due to health or age.

In today’s Virtual Visit, the homeowner’s resourcefulness of Band-Aid fixes is what kept her safe as long as she was. One of our project management staff said, “She tried so hard to cover up these spots on her own. She rigged up things.” You’ll notice repairs made by the homeowner including laying plywood on top of soft floors and even taping plastic wrap to the shower. A Band-Aid it may be, but safer, it was. 

About the Homeowner

The homeowner is an older adult whose grandchildren are frequent visitors. She loves doing things with her family like eating, laughing, and playing games. Her family plays lots of card games. We got to know the homeowner well throughout the repair process. Our operations staff described her as lovely and gracious. Repairs to this extent can be really disruptive for the family. This homeowner took everything in stride.

About the Community

The community around this home is rapidly changing. From the backyard, you see a high-end, restored mill with housing units and retail. There are new construction homes as well as flipped homes. This homeowner is working her hardest to stay in her community despite it  rapidly changing around her. Repairs protect the home. A protected home ensures we can protect the homeowner’s full choice and autonomy to stay or go on their terms.

Repair Overview

While the whole home was in a level of disrepair, the flooring was literally falling in. The single most impactful repair we could make at this home was to ensure the floor was safe to walk on. Volunteers were involved in the floor replacement process from start to finish. Additional major repairs including replacing the roof, HVAC, siding, and plumbing. 19 volunteers along with contractors and staff helped perform repairs. Partial funding for these repairs was made possible by donations to our Annual Fund, which allows our staff to discern where help is needed most.


A note from our team:

We’re proud this home is safer for its family. The number of repairs at this home well exceeded our average of 3.8 repairs per home. In the case of this home and the criteria of the household, we were able to secure and allocate financial resources for these repairs. Not all homeowners qualify for, or have access to, the same level of funding. Not all homeowners need that level of funding. In this case, our team is proud we were able to accomplish what we did and grateful to funding partners and volunteers who provide resources to make repairs possible.

Partial repair funding at this home was made possible from donations to our Annual Fund. Donations to the Annual Fund allow our staff to discern where help is needed most. You can make a donation to the Annual Fund to make repairs possible for more homeowners. Give today.