2022- Central District All Faculty Symposium – Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS)
L. Duncan, UF IFAS Extension, Sumter County, Bushnell, FL. J.Rodriguez, UF IFAS Extension, Orange County, Orlando, Fl.
L. Hamilton, UF IFAS Extension, Volusia County, Deland, Fl. J. Gomez, UF IFAS Extension, Osceola County, Kissimmee, FL.
J. Davis, UF IFAS Extension, Sumter County, Bushnell, FL. F. Oi, UF IFAS Extension, Main Campus, Gainesville, FL.
Situation: Central Florida pre-pandemic migration rates were calculated at 1500 new residents per week. Pandemic migration rates were higher. New Florida residents and new homeowners need to know the difference between caring for a home in another state and Florida and the best way to protect the homeowner’s housing investment. Objective: Homeowners will make wise purchasing decisions and reduce costs of home maintenance to protect their housing investment. Education Method: Three approaches to home maintenance were taught through pre-purchase housing programs, new homeowner programs, and programs targeted to low-income families receiving assistance. The classes, delivered in English and Spanish, covered basic home maintenance, principles of healthy homes, mold management, integrated pest management, disaster preparedness and water conservation. Agents delivered 45 pre-purchase home buyer classes to 1,287 participants in virtual and in-person formats. The home maintenance section teaches buyers to assess potential maintenance needs of prospective homes. Agents provided 18 home maintenance classes to 75 low-income households. Twelve Home Maintenance for New Homeowners programs were offered to 315 participants in the fastest growing Senior Community, The Villages. Results: In-class polling and follow-up surveys indicate that most participants increased their knowledge of home maintenance topics. Thirty-four percent (n=53) of home buyers reported that they would consider home maintenance costs when viewing prospective homes. Sixteen percent (n=8) of homeowners adopted a home maintenance schedule and prepared a home repair budget. Twenty-five participants received home rehabilitation funds of $260,000. The majority of seniors (50% – 95%) (n=157–299), reported that they would implement mold prevention, integrated pest management, and water conservation practices. Conclusion: A variety of in-person and virtual collaborations have proven to be successful in helping Florida’s homeowners protect their housing investment.