JOPLIN, Mo. —
Yvette and John Hanson say their cozy, brown house at 2018 Wall Ave. is one that love built.
The Hansons are the first to receive a new house with the help of Joplin’s new Fuller Center for Housing. “We are very, very lucky,” they said, to have been selected for a home through the nonprofit organization that gathers donations and volunteers to help build low-cost homes for buyers who are willing to put in sweat equity. An open house and dedication ceremony was held Thursday for the Hansons.
“I’m excited,” Yvette Hanson said of her new, two-bedroom home. Home ownership is a big step for the couple, who lived in the former Hampshire Terrace Apartments at the time it was destroyed by the 2011 tornado. “I’ve already decorated this a thousand times in my head, so I’m anxious to get my furniture in and see how I did,” she said as friends and volunteers came to see the finished home.
Under the Fuller Center guidelines, the Hansons put in 350 hours of sweat equity of labor on the house and education classes on things such as finances and budget and home maintenance, said Bob Barker, director of the local organization.
John Hanson helped construct the roof of the house and put on the siding.
“I’m kind of anxious to see how things go,” with home ownership, he said. “Anxious and excited.”
Yvette painted and helped put in flooring.
Construction manager Randy Crane said building the house took a relatively short three months because of the amount of assistance the organization received.
“I think what was so special about this house is it was done by some groups from outside Joplin and some local contractors,” said Crane. Three teams of volunteers from Tyler, Texas, Blacksburg, Va., and Louisville, Ky., helped.
He said the house is built with energy efficient measures aimed at lowering the Hansons energy bills. The walls are insulated at R-22 and the attic at R-38 values, Crane said, with tight windows to help keep out the heat and cold.
In addition to seeing the construction progress in good time, Crane said one of the rewards of the work has been to see the Hansons build their lives stronger too.
“It’s been neat to see them come along with pride in ownership. I’m glad to see how it gave them a sense of ownership and responsibility.”
Yvette Hanson said the couple appreciates the work of the volunteers Crane mentioned. “We’re thankful for all the church groups who came and helped. It’s been a lot of hard work but it’s been made with love.”
People interested in the program may contact director Bob Barker at 417-553-5383.