SOUTH FORK— When Brandi Wilson moved to the Del Norte area with her husband and son from the Front Range, she had planned on being a stay at home mom until she noticed that a local income based apartment complex in South Fork was looking for a management team and she decided to give the opportunity a try. Now, almost nine months later, Wilson has watched the complex turn from a shabby, worn down structure into something beautiful that residents can take pride in.
“I always wanted to help people which was why I was in health care before we moved here and then when I saw the ad in the paper for a management position at South Fork Heights and knew that I could help people there too,” said Wilson. Wilson began her position at the apartment complex in March and in August the eight-building facility began undergoing a complete renovation. “It took the owners three years to come up with the funding and we began renovations in August. We are now in the second phase of the project with a deadline of Dec. 30,” explained Wilson.
A company called Belmont Management purchased the property three years ago with hopes of receiving funding from HUD Housing to help with a remodel project. Over the course of the three-year wait, the buildings fell into disrepair and tenants found themselves in less than appropriate conditions. The long wait was over in the spring of this year, when they were notified that the entire facility would receive enough funding to completely remodel every unit, refurbish sidewalks and parking lots, add in a new playground and community building as well as new laundry facilities and landscaping.
“It has been amazing to be a part of this project and to be able to offer affordable housing to people who live in this story book town. We live in such a beautiful place and now this apartment complex will reflect the rest of this picturesque town,” said Wilson. The entire project was federally funded through the HUD program, bringing the income-based apartments up to code and ADA compliant.
The project that started in August required the current residents to move to the front four buildings on the property while the back four units were completely gutted and remodeled. Each of the one, two and three-bedroom units received wood flooring, ceiling fans, forced central heat, new fixtures throughout the units and new appliances in the kitchens and bathrooms. Then the project moved outdoors where siding and outdoor fixtures were replaced.
The back parking lot has been completely repaved and the sidewalks around the back units are brand new. In addition to the remodel and paving projects, the funding will also allow for new landscaping in the spring and a new community building that will house a small library, public computer and family event space. The outdoor area behind the complex to the east will have a picnic area complete with a pergola and barbeque pit. “We are going to continue fundraising for the additional four cement pads around the other units so that each one can have a picnic area of their own,” said Wilson.
Plans for the project also include a new playground for the children in the complex. The apartment building is always accepting qualifying applicants that meet specific income requirements. Hopes are to have the inside remodel of the units complete by the deadline in December so that they can move residents into open units as quickly as possible. The outside renovations will be complete by early summer next year. For more information, please contact Wilson at 873-5513.