While there is a huge demand for decent affordable housing in Evansville, our city is suffering from a shocking surplus of abandoned and dilapidated homes in our city's most under-served neighborhoods. A recent estimate by the Evansville Department of Metropolitan Development places the number of vacant houses in need demolition in the range 1,000-2,000. The effect of vacant housing on our city is dramatic:
Few issues affect families and communities as broadly as housing, and poor housing translates into a myriad of social, health and economic challenges for our community as a whole. The condition of housing has a tremendous impact on:
This decline of housing in our city was not an overnight event. It took decades of neglect to create the housing crisis we are experiencing today. Contributing factors include:
The bill for neglected housing in our city is coming due, and it's going to be expensive. Already hundreds of thousands of public dollars are being invested by local government to fund a land bank to begin the demolition of hundreds of dilapidated houses in our city.
But we simply do not have the resources to tear down and rebuild every vacant house in our city. Expanded efforts to restore existing housing and to promote homeownership are very much in need.
Community One has pioneered an entirely un-served category of housing services in Evansville; the volunteer-based restoration of existing housing through whole-house rehab projects.
Our work is privately funded, volunteer-based, and collaborative in that we focus in areas where other development is occurring so that the impact is multiplied by the work of other nonprofits and local government.
Our restoration work is entirely unique in Evansville. It is complementary to the construction of new housing and contributes to a comprehensive approach to restoring neglected neighborhoods.
When vacant, yet savable, housing stock becomes available, we acquire and restore the housing with discounted/donated materials and significant volunteer labor.
Through our network of community partners, restored homes are sold at an affordable price to families and individuals who want to invest in neighborhoods through homeownership, with the proceeds returning to Community One for future rehabs.
Whole-house rehabs provide the following benefits: