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CSA offers free home repairs for low-income households

Free home repairs are available to low income Mountain View residents under a new city funded program from the Community Services Agency, but only a few households have taken up the offer.

The CSA was given a $30,000 grant to provide up to $1,500 in repairs to each qualifid household, but only four households have used the program so far, prompting CSA officials to try to publicize the program.

"We have quite a bit of money left and we're eager to help people out," said Megan Purdue, CSA's senior services program director. "We're definitely looking for more jobs."

The program provides a licensed contractor to make minor repairs and accessibility modifications, such as wheelchair ramps, grab bars and widened doorways for the disabled or the elderly, though Purdue adds that such modifications can cost more than $1,500. General home repairs are not available to rental homes, as the CSA considers the landlord responsible for those.

"The things we've done include anything from changing light bulbs to repairing the siding on a mobile home, replacing garbage disposals and fixing leaky faucets," Purdue said.

To qualify, applicants must live in Mountain View and meet HUD income guidelines which would qualify a one-person household with less than $56,600 in income a year, or $64,400 for a two-person household.

For more information, go to CSAcares.org or call Megan Purdue at 650-968-0836 ext. 131.

Comments

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Nick
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Feb 6, 2012 at 4:15 pm

Sounds well-intentioned, but ill-conceived -- how many people are low income but still afford to own & maintain a house in expensive Mountain View, AND need only ~$1500 in repairs? (or if it's much higher, they wouldn't really need the help). No wonder it's not widely used.

Plus -- anyone in that group would have bought their house so long ago that they have ridiculously low property tax thanks to Prop 13, along with hundreds of thousands of dollars in appreciation on the home -- why do they need additional benefits from the city? Take out a reverse mortgage to pay for repairs, since the home would be worth so much.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by @ Nick
a resident of Waverly Park
on Feb 6, 2012 at 5:07 pm

I see your point, but...

How about all these people who are currently unemployed or under employed? We live in a house worth alot, but our income is currently $0. To pay the mortgage and feed our kids, we are not doing maintanence on the house. I may take them up on this.

I think there are more people than you realize. CSA sees them every day.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Jes' Sayin'
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Feb 6, 2012 at 5:49 pm

Perhaps part of the parrroblem is that if you go to csacares.org and look under services there is nothing about home repair listed? Kinda hard to request it if there's no info about it on the site, isn't it?


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Mr. Big
a resident of Martens-Carmelita
on Feb 7, 2012 at 4:12 am

The CSA is such a valuable community resource and another reason I think Mountain View is one of the best cities to live in anywhere.

And, yes there are many people in the area who are hanging on to their homes with every tooth and nail that could use help with maintenance items as they are usually neglected in lew of paying mortgages, utilities and food.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Old Ben
a resident of Shoreline West
on Feb 7, 2012 at 6:37 am

Now if only "one of the best cities to live in anywhere" would set some basic standards for residential rental units and enforce those standards with inspections, those of us paying extravagant rents to live here might be able to enjoy it more.

Not likely, but it would be nice.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Luke
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Feb 7, 2012 at 8:41 am

Obi One?


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Bob of Bob's Burgers
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Feb 7, 2012 at 8:44 am

We called, left a message, and no one called back. Pretty weak for "one of the best cities to live in anywhere". Just sayin...


 +   Like this comment
Posted by tommygee54
a resident of Rex Manor
on Feb 7, 2012 at 3:48 pm

What qualifies as low income? I lost my job 2 years ago and make no salary. My brother works but he certainly would qualify for low income help. We would be considered as two people living under the poverty level. No kidding. So I would wonder if we qualify as low income...


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Ned
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Feb 7, 2012 at 5:40 pm

All of a sudden everyone is looking for a hand out.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by gcoladon
a resident of North Whisman
on Feb 8, 2012 at 2:24 pm

gcoladon is a registered user.

I wonder why there isn't more private charity available for this sort of thing. I mean, retired contractors who would be willing to help people (elderly, or destitute) with little odd jobs like this, rather than having to be paid for doing it out of the public purse.

I get the impression that people used to do this sort of thing for each other, just out of a general feeling of neighborliness. Where did that go?


 +   Like this comment
Posted by tommygee54
a resident of Rex Manor
on Feb 8, 2012 at 6:35 pm

...All of a sudden we find out that the CSA has this kind of help available...so a hand out---well I will admit to that. I am certainly low income, with hardly any money coming in....Enough said.


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