BETTER HOUSING: The Path To Home Ownership

Thousands of people visited the Home and Remodeling Show to find ideas for their homes and left with something far more valuable.

Living in sub-standard housing is a reality for 10,000 people in Polk County. If you haven’t lived in crammed quarters, spending more than half of your income on housing, chances are you’d never know.

“There’s an example of fifty dollars of food and a family making that list for a whole week of groceries,” said Lance Penning, Executive Director for Greater Des Moines Habitat for Humanity.

At the Home and Remodeling show, Habitat for Humanity has a unique home on display.

Half of it is built to resemble the living conditions of some of the county’s poorest residents, the other half is designed show the journey to home ownership for more than 200 families who have had their lives changed by the organization.

“They go into home finance, home maintenance, and home repair,” said Penning.

Walking through the house was an eye opening experience for Cat Nicol. She’s donated to Habitat for Humanity in the past, but had never seen the impact her dollars truly have on Iowa families.

“You don’t really think about it here. There are a lot of people that need help,” said Nicol.

Nicol says after seeing the way some people live, she’s inspired to give her time as well.

Habitat for Humanity says they’ll take all the help they can get to help more families on the path to home ownership.

“We need more than 14,000 volunteers to help us. That’s like filling Hilton Coliseum with volunteers,” said Penning.

You can see the Habitat home at the Home and Remodeling Show Sunday from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m.

For more information on how to volunteer, visit the Greater Des Moines Habitat for Humanity website here.

1 Comment

  • Bailey

    Maybe a little fact-checking would help. Habitat for Humanity’s Executive Director is Lance Henning, not Penning.

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