Restoring quality of life
COAL TOWNSHIP - Restoration Ministries, which has been active in many community projects since its founding in 1996, has helped improve the quality of life in a Coal Township neighborhood by renovating a blighted property at 1676 W. Spruce St. that it plans to sell.
Approximately 80 people attended an open house at the large, four-story structure Thursday through Sunday that church members converted into a single home during the past year.
Paul Eby, pastor of Restoration Ministries, Third and Chestnut streets, said, "We bought the home in July 2013 for $5,000 from the previous owner with the intention of completely gutting and renovating it to modern standards. Adults and four male teens from the church did all the work and deserve a lot of credit."
Eby and Dan Jones, a youth pastor at the church, oversaw the house renovation project, which was completed about a week ago.
Bader's Fine Furniture in Shamokin loaned furniture to the church for the open house.
"The teens who helped with the construction, electrical, carpentry and plumbing work learned valuable skills while working under the adults that will be very useful in their future lives," Eby said. "We bought the house so we could renovate a blighted property and improve the neighborhood. The double home and surrounding property were in very poor condition and the neighbors have expressed their gratitude for taking on the project. Now, we just have to sell the home."
One of those appreciative neighbors is 85-year-old Albert Belski, of 1678 W. Spruce St., whom Eby said has been very cooperative in the group's efforts to renovate the home.
Eby, who has received one offer for the home, estimated that $130,000 was spent on renovating the property, which is being sold for $150,000.
Proceeds from the sale will be used for the church's youth ministry and soup kitchen.
"The renovations have been challenging and involved an overwhelming amount of work," Eby said. "It ended up being a bigger project than we anticipated, but now that it's complete, the effort was definitely worth it. It's a beautiful home."
The house contains a dual-sided brick fireplace in the middle of the living room, a new furnace, four bedrooms, including a master bedroom with an ensuite and spacious walk-in closet, basement area, two full baths with ceramic floor tiles, a large kitchen with granite counter tops and porcelain floor tiles, new windows, wiring, walls, a patio, a decorative retaining wall, concrete steps and backyard.
Anyone interested in seeing or purchasing the home can contact Eby at 570-850-8516.