Home maintenance class held to improve home conditions

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COLUMBIA - A free home maintenance workshop taught people how to keep their homes in tip-top shape Saturday. 

Anyone was welcome to attend the four hour class sponsored by MU Extension and the city of Columbia.

This class acted like the Pinterest for home owners; It provided many do-it-yourself tricks and ideas, just for home maintenance issues instead of the recipes and crafts people usually find on Pinterest. 

The class covered:

  • basic home repairs
  • preventative home maintenance
  • how to decide between do-it-yourself or hiring a contractor
  • insulation and energy efficiency
  • and more

But Eric Hempel, a housing specialist, says the lessons taught in class can help owners with more than just maintenance issues.

"Well, a house that is well-maintained is going to be more affordable," Hempel said. "A house that is energy-efficient is also going to be more affordable. Also a house that is well-maintained is going to be healthier. There will be reduced problems with dust and mold and other problems that can be associated with maintenance issues."

Hempel said this class has been held for the past 10 to 15 years, but Saturday was the first time the class was conducted in a new location.

"This is our first time at a new facility, The Family Impact Center, which we're really excited about," Hempel said. "Great center, it's provided by the University Extension, and there's a lot of great services here, so we're happy to be here."He also said the program can help homeowners feel better about the condition of their homes.

"I think [it will help them in] feeling more confident in maintaining their house and identifying issues before they grow and get more costly and more damaging," Hempel said.

At the class there was also information on the city of Columbia's Home Repair Program, which is a program that benefits homeowners.

"In order to qualify for our home repair programs for the city of Columbia, the household has to be within the city limits of Columbia," Hempel said. "And then we have income guidelines that regulate who's qualified, and it has to be owner-occupied."

Hemple encourages Columbia residents to apply now because the wait list is short. 

Hempel also said it is important for people to learn the benefits of owning a home rather than renting.