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Restoration Housing Sets “Kick-Off” for Historic Home in Belmont

Nonprofit begins fifth restoration effort of an historic home

Restoration Housing has announced that they are kicking off the historic rehabilitation of their fifth home in Roanoke, a circa 1899 home in the recently designated historic district of Belmont in Southeast Roanoke.

Before they acquired the home the previous winter, the historic property had been vacant for several years and had suffered from an exposed hole in the roof, leaving it in a heavily deteriorated state with rotten floor systems on both the first and second story in the rear of the house.

In the Spring of 2020, Restoration Housing received CDBG (Community Development Block Grant) funding from the City of Roanoke’s HUD office to assist with the rehab costs for this project. Later that year, they also received funding from Virginia Housing to assist in preliminary stabilization work before the rehab phase could commence.

These grants will allow the organization to finish the project with minimal debt, thereby ensuring that the rent will remain low for a single family who will ultimately occupy the space once the rehab is complete. Other construction sources were obtained through additional local foundations as well as through the use of Historic Tax Credits.

“I drove by this house in the Fall of 2019 and knew that it was a Restoration Housing project. You could tell that it had been vacant for a long time and needed a lot of TLC, but you could also tell that it had character and charm and unique architectural features that made it stand out as a property worth saving”, said Executive Director Isabel Thornton.  

Acquired by Restoration Housing in early 2020, this project will be the fifth rehabilitation overhaul for the nonprofit organization, which began in 2014, with another in the pipeline just down the street.

This is one of three projects for the organization that are located in the Belmont neighborhood of Southeast Roanoke. Their first two projects are located in the West End and are both used as affordable rental housing. The third project is the Villa Heights Rec Center, which is located in Northwest Roanoke and which provides affordable rental space for nonprofit organizations seeking to expand services in low to moderate income neighborhoods.

Roanoke contractor Square 1, which also completed the previous four projects, will perform the renovation and Jeff Wood Designs completed architectural drawings. Each project of the organization uses historic tax credits to offset construction costs and keep rents affordable.

The organization will hold a small, socially-distanced ribbon cutting and “kick off” celebration on March 24th at 10:00 am to celebrate the commencement of the rehabilitation. All press inquiries will be conducted outside and tours will be allowed with a maximum of five people in the house at any given time.

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