2070 Dowd Ave., Lakewood



    Yep, hard to believe that a house that started out that crooked could end up solid and straight. 

    Seriously, Willie’s photo somehow ended up “warped” and we just loved giving him a hard time about it.

    This is the home where our rooster, bought at the Restore, joined our team.  Mary would ring the bell to announce lunchtime.  The rooster then moved with us to Colfax after this house was done.

    Habitat acquired this property in the Historic Bird District of southwest Lakewood, OH.  You didn’t know that there was a Dowd bird, did ya?  Neither did I, and I can’t find it on the web, either.

    The Lakewood Historical Society supplied funding to purchase Hardie Board siding, as vinyl would not be allowed in the historical district.  Debbie taught us how to install it; trust me, it’s a bear, and it took us AGES to get it sided, probably 3x longer than our usual vinyl siding.

    This will also be the last new build we will be involved with, as Habitat has decided it’s more prudent to do rehabs than new builds.

    The house was blitzed in early June 2012, and I joined in as soon as we returned from our Europe/Moscow trip in June 2012. For whatever reason, they were building the roof rafters rather than installing trusses, and the weather/humidity was approaching triple digits that day.  Cutting was done in the garage, a crew brought the 2x14s into the first floor, another crew sent them up to us on the second floor, who fed them up to Jason and Debbie in the rafters.  Every so often, one of them would scream “HOSE” and we’d pass up the hose to drench them and cool them off a little.They miraculously got all them on in one day.

    Next come the porches, then finish the blueboard insulation, then furring strips to accommodate the Hardie board having to be nailed in every 2 feet.  Professionals finish the roof and shingling.  And we do all the inside work.  Habitat wisely revised the inside plans to allow for taller walls on the second floor than in the new build on E. 84th, where you’d hit your head in the bedrooms.  They also adjusted the size of the 2nd floor bath and linen closet.

    This back porch was a case of too many cooks in the kitchen.  Another volunteer (we won’t mention any names) had started the postholes in the wrong place.  New ones had to be dug.  Then same volunteer managed to set the posts in cement in the wrong place in the holes, and thus, those had to be dug out....and new holes redug.  Suffice it to say, we veterans were glad that Moen was sending volunteer crews on a regular basis.

    Often on Saturdays, Case Western Reserve students would come help.  Boy, their young limber bodies came in handy!

    Moen Plumbing was a major sponsor of this house, contributing $50,000 and weekly teams of volunteers.

Since Hardie board siding has cement in it, drilling holes into it for venting requires constant watering to prevent cracking.

   Kim and I learned to install snap & lock laminate flooring in the 1st floor bedroom.  Kim then proceeded to do the entry hallway at his home.

To the left, the labor-intensive process of installing Hardie Board siding, which starts with cutting and then nailing in furring strips every 2 ft. to accommodate nailing the siding into something solid.