Habitat for Humanity ReStore

Thursday, August 19, 2010 | 12:01 a.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — In a cramped warehouse in an industrial district near Old 63 and Business Loop 70, ceiling-high shelves are packed to the brim with all sorts of building materials in varying stages of disrepair. Narrow walkways are lined with outdated appliances, and a handful of volunteers joke around while organizing tools in a corner.

The air smells of paint thinner and other chemicals, and the air conditioning units are no match for the hot, drafty fumes.

By the numbers

61 - Houses built by Habitat for Humanity in mid-Missouri since 1988

$46,600 - Average cost of a Habitat home built in the United States

1,050 - Average square-footage of Habitat homes

250-300 - Volunteer hours homeowners contribute to construction

89 - Number of countries where Habitat for Humanity is established

Most of the recycled and donated products in the Habit for Humanity ReStore have seen better days, but are far from the end of their lives. They will soon be repurposed and used in houses the organization will build in mid-Missouri.

The ReStore is so full that Habitat officials have begun construction on an expansion facility next door. The concrete foundation has been laid, and the annex is expected to open later this year.

Based in Columbia, the Show-Me Central affiliate of Habitat for Humanity was founded in 1988 and has built more than 60 homes for local families since then. It continues to build at a rate of three houses per year.

Families chosen to receive homes are required to contribute the equivalent of up to 300 hours of labor to construction and keep the terms of a 20-year, no-interest mortgage on the home.

Habitat holds regular meetings at 7 p.m. on the third Tuesday of each month at Community United Methodist Church, located across from the HyVee on West Broadway.

Volunteers are always welcome to get involved with building projects, help with fundraising efforts or staff the ReStore facility at 1906 Monroe St.

You can also connect with Habitat for Humanity on Facebook or visit the group's official website.

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