Will Grandbois
wgrandbois@postindependent.com

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March 29, 2014
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Roaring Fork Valley Habitat ReStore gross income 6th in nation

Habitat for Humanity of the Roaring Fork Valley’s ReStore is one of the 10 most successful operations nationwide, according to data from Habitat International.

For the 2013 fiscal year (July of 2012 through June of 2013), the local ReStore brought in $1,872,458 in gross income for a single store. That places them sixth out of 756 stores in the country, behind Charleston, Des Moines, Dallas, Denver, and Central Arizona.

They ranked ninth in profits with $668,696 in net income. The affiliate as a whole ranked 17th in gross income and 12th in net profit.

That’s despite serving one of the lowest population regions. With roughly 79,000 people from Aspen to Parachute, that’s $23.70 raised per person. The state average is $2.58 pre person, which still makes Colorado second in the nation per capita, behind only North Carolina, and fifth in overall income.

“We weren’t trying to be the biggest,” said chapter President Scott Gilbert, “We’ve always been trying to be the best.”

Gilbert decided to track down the data after hearing about Denver’s fourth place status.

“I thought maybe we were top 50 but I had no idea we were this far up the ladder,” he added.

ReStore of the Roaring Fork Valley has seen considerable growth in the last two years. They opened an annex in Glenwood in August 2012 to accommodate large donations from the Hotel Jerome and Snowmass Club.

Although 2013 has seen fewer major remodels, they’ve been able to keep inventory and sales at both the annex and the main complex off of Highway 82.

“Two years ago our store was half the size it was last year,” Gilbert observed. “We had a huge spurt when we got those five hotels and then continued momentum.”

Two locations means more staff and more overhead, but despite having a full time equivalent of 15 employees, the ReStore’s 36 percent profit margin is better than average.

Gilbert said the location’s relatively low ratio of volunteer-to-employee FTE was based on consistently scheduled employees and didn’t include large volunteer groups from organizations like the Jaywalker Lodge in Carbondale.

“We have a lot going on,” he said. “We believe in paying the people that work for us to do the daily routine tasks.”

The jobs, Gilbert says, are another benefit of the organization, along with keeping used items out of landfills by selling them at a reduced price and, of course, building homes.

“In the end the more exposure we get and the more money we can generate the more homes we can build,” Gilbert observed.

He said the organization was planning on increasing its general fundraising efforts in order to supplement the income from the ReStore.

The affiliate hopes to build two single family homes and one duplex in the next fiscal year. It is finishing up a duplex in Silt as well as a unique single family residence in Carbondale’s Keator Grove. The home is full of special features to accommodate Adam Lavender, who was paralyzed in a mountain biking accident, and his family. It is also on track to become the first Western Slope residence that is certified platinum in energy efficiency by LEED. The ReStore’s record sales helped to make it possible.

“It’s probably the most expensive Habitat house ever built and also probably the nicest,” Gilbert said.

Habitat is also looking into purchasing a lot in Aspen, which would be its first holding that far upvalley.

“We’re really excited at Habitat because we feel like we’re starting to reach our stride and we’re looking forward to helping more people,” Gilbert concluded.

“We’re really excited at Habitat because we feel like we’re starting to reach our stride and we’re looking forward to helping more people.”
Scott Gilbert
chapter president


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The Post Independent Updated Mar 29, 2014 10:36PM Published Mar 29, 2014 10:36PM Copyright 2014 The Post Independent. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.