Although the Owensboro Habitat for Humanity is currently on its 138th home build, the local Habitat no longer operates a “ReStore” for donated building materials. Habitat ReStores are home improvement stores that accept and resell small and large donations of new or gently used furniture, appliances, housewares, building materials and use the proceeds from the sales of these items for Habitat’s work in the community.
Instead, the Owensboro Habitat for Humanity location has held a garage sale for the last several years and used the proceeds raised to go back into new housing construction.
This year’s garage sale will be held Saturday, March 16, from 7 a.m. – 1 p.m. at Century Christian Church.
Karen Owen-Phelps, Owensboro Habitat’s coordinator of applicants and volunteers, said in past years they have had granite countertops, doors and, last year, Mount St. Joe donated furniture from the convent. This year, she said they have vanities, laminate flooring, ceiling fans and light fixtures as well as the usual household items, clothing and books.
“We just get an odd collection,” Owen-Phelps said. “Sometimes people that have rental property are looking for rental property fixtures come and check us out.”
Owen-Phelps said their largest donor this year has been Tractor Supply. The company donated a large amount of hardware to Habitat, including strap and gate hinges and they are hoping to find just the right buyer.
Office Manager Jane Cox said Habitat raises about $5,000 each year out of the necessary $70,000 it costs to build a house from the garage sale.
“A lot of people think we give our houses away,” Owen-Phelps said. “But these families pay a house payment just like everyone else — just at a lower cost. They pay a 20-year low-interest mortgage and are required to put in ‘sweat equity.’”
Owen-Phelps said that could include volunteering to help build their own house or other people’s houses or working at the garage sale. She said there could be individuals from school students to seniors helping with the sale this Saturday.
“There will be some applicants working there that day,” Owen-Phelps said. “There will also be many volunteers and board members. It takes quite an army to put on something like this.”
Because they are unsure of how to price some items, Owen-Phelps said Habitat relies on the honesty and generosity of those making purchases to be fair with their monetary donations.
Habitat for Humanity will be accepting donated items at Century Christian Church located at 1301 Tamarack Road Wednesday through Friday morning from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Habitat cannot accept donations of paint or any other household items that may be difficult to dispose of.
For those looking for household items that cannot make it to the garage sale, call 270-926 -6110. The local Habitat office keeps a running list of items that people have requested and are seeking in case someone offers a similar donation of that type.