ARPA-funded Renew Detroit program reaches 500th new roof installation milestone

  • $45M Program helping up to 2,000 low-income seniors, residents with disabilities stay in their homes by replacing leaking roofs and windows
  • $30M coming from Detroit’s share of President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan, $15M from State of Michigan
  • Program expects to have 1,400 roofs completed by the end of this year

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan, along with City Council members are celebrating a significant milestone as part of the Renew Detroit home repair program. Last week, the Renew Detroit crews completed their 500th roof replacements since the program was announced in late 2021.

Mayor Duggan and Councilmember Latisha Johnson met with Barbara I’Ron at her home on Roxbury in the Outer Drive-Hayes neighborhood. The 85-year-old has lived in her home for 37 years, and recently received a much needed, brand-new roof, as the old one was allowing water damage inside her house.  Ms. I’Ron applied for the Renew Detroit program when it was launched and was thrilled to be accepted into the program.

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“I appreciate this roof repair, and everything was done so nice,” said I’Ron. “I have lived here since 1987. This is a blessing and I thank you.”

Mayor Duggan said it was for the longtime homeowners like Ms. L’Ron that Renew Detroit was created to help.

“In partnership with Detroit City Council, we created the Renew Detroit program to make sure long-term Detroit seniors were not forced leave their home because of a leaky roof they could not afford to replace on their retirement income,” said Mayor Duggan. “We’ve done this for 500 Detroit seniors so far and we’re going to do up to another 1,500 before we are done.”

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Originally envisioned to provide major, non-emergency repairs for up to 1,500 homes, the Renew Detroit program was announced in September 2021, funded by $30 million from President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA).

In July 2022, the program was expanded to $45 million thanks to an additional $15 million from the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA). With the additional funding, the program now has the capacity to reach up to 2,000 homes and will see Phase 2 expanded to allow for window replacements. The city will continue Phase 1 roof replacements throughout 2024, with Phase 2 repairs following in 2024-26.

The program was made possible with the support of City Council.

"Since my time on Council, I have always done my best to lift the voices of one of the most underrepresented demographics in Detroit which is our seniors,” said Council President Mary Sheffield. “Knowing and understanding the difficulties that come with aging - limited mobility, health challenges, and financial constraints, this program sends a message that we as a city are working to provide resources to assist with housing maintenance for our aging population to keep them safe in their own homes."

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The Renew Detroit program is now moving at a strong pace, currently completing 85-95 roof installations per month, with that number expected to increase to at least 100 per month as the warmer weather arrives.  By the end of 2024, the program expects to have completed 1,400 roof installations.

"The Renew Detroit program is vital to the sustainability of our housing stock,” said Councilmember Latisha Johnson. “Recognizing the age and architecture within the city, properties are costly to maintain. I'm enthused that we're able to prioritize seniors, longtime Detroiters, and those of moderate income as awardees.”

Utilizing Detroit workers

One of the missions of Renew Detroit is to expand construction within the city, while utilizing Detroit-based talent. With the addition of our partners at 1-800-Hansons, the program was able to tap into a pool of Detroit-based subcontractors and complete more repairs than before.

“At Hansons, we enjoy helping the local community and can do this by not only helping Detroit residents love where they live, but also by employing team members and install partners from within the city,” said 1-800-Hansons Regional Manager Gary Sherman. “Detroit is an amazing place and is full of talented people. Hansons proudly serves and supports Detroit as our roots grow deep here. The Renew Detroit program aligns perfectly with our mission at Hansons, and we are extremely proud to be their chosen contractor. We look forward to a long relationship with the Renew Detroit team in continuation of beautifying the city of Detroit.”

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Other available resources

While Renew Detroit is now closed for applications, the city offers the Detroit 0% Home Repair Loan Program. This program provides loans to Detroit homeowners of $5,000 to $25,000 to complete home repairs and resolve health and safety issues. Homeowners have 10 years to pay back the loans, which are provided at 0% interest – meaning homeowners pay back only what they borrow. Those interested in applying can find more information here. 

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