Second Habitat ReStore Opens

Greater Des Moines Habitat for Humanity expands its retail to the west side.

This past month, Greater Des Moines (GDM) Habitat for Humanity opened its second ReStore location in the metro area at 4033 NW Urbandale Avenue, Urbandale, with Grand Opening Week activities that included appliance giveaways, craft activities, and an official ribbon cutting ceremony.

“We had been looking to expand for a while,” says Jenna Ekstrom, GDM Habitat’s Director of Marketing and Development. “We wanted a location that was more easily accessible to those on the west side so we could expand our sales to more customers.”

The original Des Moines ReStore, which relocated a few years ago from 2nd Avenue to a larger facility on East Euclid, had been operating at capacity with no real room to expand.

“Finding the new west side property was really serendipitous,” Ekstrom says. “We have a Realtor on one of our committees, and he brought the property to our attention when it became available.”

The only major construction required was to expand the parking lot, but that took some time because crews were working over the winter months. “We did some painting and stripped floors and things inside,” Ekstrom says. “But the time-consuming work was the parking lot.”

Profits from the East Euclid store provide enough funding for about 15 Habitat for Humanity homes each year. Ekstrom says the hope is that the new location will allow funding for at least another 15.

She explains, “Our profit from the ReStores will benefit our mission of building homes, community, and hope. So though that can mean a variety of things, it helps to express that in terms of homes built—and the profits from the original ReStore were enough to cover the cost of building more than 15 homes.”

Out of more than 900 stores nationally, the East Euclid ReStore has been ranked the number one ReStore in the country for the past two years.

Each of the stores sells new and used home improvement materials to the public at discounted prices, including items such as cabinets, lumber, flooring, paint, lighting and plumbing fixtures, and windows.

Ekstrom adds, “One of the great things about the ReStores is that they not only provide a great resource for those interested in making affordable improvements to their own homes, but they also promote sustainability by encouraging a reuse/recycle mentality.”

In the state of Iowa alone, construction and demolition materials comprise 16% of the total waste being landfilled. Through the ReStore donation process (see “Get involved!”), thousands of tons of materials are diverted from landfills each year, helping to create a cleaner and greener metro area.

Greater Des Moines Habitat for Humanity is a Christian ministry that brings people together to build homes, communities, and hope. Qualified families apply for partnership with Habitat for Humanity based on three criteria: need for housing, ability to pay, and willingness to partner. At closing, families purchase their home through an affordable mortgage.

In addition to creating homeownership, GDM Habitat for Humanity is focused on neighborhood revitalization through the program Rock the Block, which assists residents with repair, maintenance, and beautification of homes. These efforts are focused primarily in neighborhoods where residents and other stakeholders agree to work closely with GDM Habitat to improve their community.

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Get involved!

In addition to participating in Habitat building projects, you can support the group’s mission by donating new and used materials.

“Whether it’s cabinets or appliances from a remodel project or unused overstock items, builders and remodelers can donate to the ReStore and receive a tax receipt for their records,” Ekstrom says.

Donations can be made Monday through Saturday at either ReStore location between 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m.

Donors can bring items to the store. ReStore staff will unload them and provide a receipt. For larger loads, ReStore staff will even schedule an appointment and pick up the donation.

For more information, contact the donation manager at 515-309-0224.

East location: 2200 East Euclid Avenue, Des Moines

West location: 4033 NW Urbandale Drive, Urbandale