Habitat provides east-end residents with new reno service

Do-it-yourselfers living in the city’s east end and working on limited income have a new way to renovate and update their homes.

A fourth Habitat for Humanity ReStore opened recently in the Studio District, to serve the Beach, Leslieville and Riverdale neighborhoods.

ReStores sell new and gently used renovation materials and supplies that have been donated by companies and the community. With these donations Habitat is able to sell everything in its ReStore for half the retail price.

Joanna Dwyer works in marketing and communications for Habitat for Humanity. She’s proud of the new facility.

“All of our products are donated renovation materials, such as appliances and home products,” she said. “Manufactures, homeowners, suppliers and contractors donate to us … Products range from a brand new toilet from a show room floor to a antique mahogany front door from a Rosedale home.”

Habitat for Humanity relies on volunteers, such as Mensur Mohammed, who is a Habitat Toronto partner family as well as an avid ReStore volunteer.

“There are no words to describe the happiness for people who need this. It’s excellent. I hope more people will know about it,” Mohammed said.

Mohammed is expecting to live in a Habitat home as soon as land becomes available. He has already gone through an application process and volunteering at a ReStore is part of this.

“I drive a taxi, and I always talk to people in the car about Habitat because a lot of people don’t know about this,” he said. “It has changed my life big time … I can’t afford to buy a house, so with Habitat and their help, I am very grateful.”

Dwyer pointed out that the ReStore fits exactly with the Habitat for Humanity mandate.

“Habitat has a very self-sustaining model financially and the ReStore is helping the environment as well. All of the products that have been donated to us would have otherwise ended up in landfill, so we are finding a new home for them, we are pretty self-sustaining in that was as well,” she said.