Up to ten County homes may soon have new roofs thanks to the Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation’s generous support of Aroostook County Action Program’s new Roofs Over Aroostook project.

ACAP received $50,000 from the Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation to help meet the special housing repair need for seniors and low-income people in The County whose roofs are failing, or worse, no longer functional.

ACAP’s Energy and Housing has a waiting list that hovers near 460 homes in need of various repairs. Each year, homes they are able to repair with available funding sources fall off that list, while more homes in need are added. Approximately 75 percent of those homes on the waiting list are in need of some form of roof repair or replacement, according to Gary Sirois, Energy and Housing Program Coordinator at ACAP.

“Aroostook County winters take quite a toll on roofs, and the need for roof repairs is as wide as our Home Repair Priority Waiting list is long. The welcome donation from the Stephen and Tabitha King foundation will increase the overall number of home repair projects we can perform, by reducing the financial burden of roof repair from other funding sources.

In June, Sirois developed the Roofs Over Aroostook project, aimed at allocating resources specifically to meet the needs of ACAP customers needing roof repairs and replacements. Oftentimes, homes that need roof repairs also are in need of a variety of other fixes – such as window replacements, heating system upgrades, etc. Additionally, even when a home needing only roof repair is placed on the waiting list, the timeframe to address that issue is short before the damaged roof begins to cause additional, expensive necessary home repairs.

ACAP’s current primary funding resources for the Home Repair Network comes from Maine State Housing Authority and Community Development Block Grants (CDBG). Guidelines from those primary funding resources have restrictions and per project limits.

It can cost anywhere between $10,000 and $15,000 to replace an average roof. By the time most roofs have begun to leak or need repair, any smaller attempts at repairs, other than full replacements, are little more than temporary fixes that will end up costing more in the long run.

By dedicating the funding from the Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation strictly to replacing roofs and using that funding to leverage other resources and/or by working with community partners to reduce labor costs, Sirois estimates that ACAP will be able to perform as many as ten complete roof replacements in the upcoming year.

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