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In This Issue    Happy Thanksgiving! | Construction Watch
Stay Warm! | Volunteer Opportunities | B District Meeting
Bulk Trash Schedule  | Block Club Meeting | Holiday Shopping for HOCN




Thanksgiving is a time of year when we all reflect on the things we're thankful for. I bet you can guess what we're thankful for... That's right- affordable housing! Despite talk of Buffalo having low cost housing, not all of our City’s housing is affordable.  The Buffalo-Niagara metropolitan area is the 9th worst region in the nation for rental housing affordability, with 60% of renters, as well as 33% of mortgaged homeowners and 20% of non-mortgaged homeowners, paying over 30% of their gross annual income for rent.

Almost 68% of Buffalo’s housing stock was built in 1939 or earlier. The cost of rent or the price of a home for sale may be “cheap,” however the apartment or home could also be in need of major health, safety, and structural repairs.  High utility costs add to housing burdens. Buffalo area residents pay well above national averages for their electricity and natural gas. The age and often un-insulated housing stock drives costs up further.

Thanks to your continued support, we're able to help lower maintenance costs for homeowners, provide safe, healthy, affordable housing for tenants, and restore vacant homes.

Thank you for thinking of affordable housing this season, and all year long! And on behalf of our staff and board, we hope you and yours have a very happy Thanksgiving!


Our latest gut-rehab, 192 Whitney Place, is almost done and will be officially sold to the Kemper family by the end of the month!

We'd like to send our sincerest thanks to one contractor in particular who has really made a difference in the rehab of this house: Sunset Custom Homes. Their amazing team has worked tirelessly at preserving the details that made us fall in love with 192 Whitney Place. They've rehabbed the once vacant home into a safe and healthy one for our new homeowners. From refinishing the original hardwood floors to preserving the character in the porch spindles, 192 Whitney has truly turned out beautiful.

See photos of the transformation on our Facebook Page. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to see the final photos in the next coming weeks!




The cold is settling in, so if you haven't sought out resources to lower your energy bills and keep the draft out- now's the time!

Looking to weatherize your home, head to toe? You can contact our fellow housing organizations who have weatherization programs for the West Side of Buffalo, including PUSH Green and South Buffalo Neighborhood Housing Services

Need help with your high utility bills? The Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) is federally funded assistance with home heating costs and energy conservation for eligible households. Program components include benefit assistance for heat and electricity, providing credit to your utility accounts to put towards your energy costs this winter season. And you don't have to be a homeowner to apply- just an income eligible household! The HEAP office opens to all applicants on November 18th. To learn more, call the HEAP Hotline at 8548-7644.

Want to keep the draft out of your old, leaky windows? Insulating with plastic and applying weather stripping can really make a difference! Watch a tutorial from Home Depot here. You can pick up window kits at your local hardware store for under $20. Because we know how burdensome these costs can be to many households, our office also collects donated weatherization kits to give to those in need in the 14201 area. So if you live in the neighborhood and need a free window kit, you can stop by our office during business hours, M-F 9am-4pm or contact our office by emailing or calling (716) 882-7661 ext. 202 to reserve a kit and schedule a pick-up time. Supplies are limited and subject to availability.

And of course, HOCN can help make your home healthy and more energy efficient through our minor home repair programs. While we currently have a waiting list and are unable to assist anymore homes this season, you can still get added to our waiting list today or contact our office for more information by emailing or calling (716) 882-7661 ext. 203.


Looking for ways to get involved in the neighborhood this month?

City of Light is coming to the neighborhood! The B Team Buffalo is partnering with the Boys and Girls Club on Tenth Street to decorate homes in the surrounding neighborhood, free of charge, on Saturday, December 7th. If you're interested in volunteering for this great event, register for a time slot here or contact Elizabeth Callahan at B Team Buffalo at (716) 984-7660 or by email.

You can also help neighborhood block clubs with their annual tree planting this coming Saturday, November 9th. At 9:00am, meet the Kleinhans Community Association (KCA) at First Presbyterian Church in Symphony Circle, on the Wadsworth side of the building. Bring gloves and a shovel if you're able to. For more information, visit the KCA's event listing on Facebook.

Have an upcoming volunteer opportunity? Post it to the Lower West Side Facebook Page to let the neighborhood know!


The next B District Police meeting will tentatively be held on Monday, November 18th at 10:00am in 695 Main Street. For questions, please contact the District's Community Police Officer (CPO), Officer Quintana.


While Fall Bulk Trash dates have passed, you can still place two pieces of bulk trash per week out with your totes. Leaves and yard debris can be placed in clear bags and left by your totes.
Click here for more information.




Join the block club group Hudson Street Revitalization Initiative on Thursday, November 7th from 6:00pm-8:00pm at the First Presbyterian Church at One Symphony Circle to meet with Housing Court's Judge Carney and talk with neighbors about problem properties in the neighborhood. For more information, contact the Hudson Street Revitalization Group on Facebook



Did you know that you can support HOCN with every online purchase you make this holiday season? Use GoodShop when you make online purchases at stores like Amazon, 1800Flowers, Target, Walgreens, and so much more! A portion of your purchase will be directly donated to us at no additional cost to you! What could be easier? And did we mention there's coupons on GoodShop? Start shopping through GoodShop today! Don't forget to set up 'Heart of the City Neighborhoods, Inc.' as your cause! Learn more about GoodShop here.

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Heart of the City Neighborhoods, Inc. does not create barriers to obtaining housing because of race, color,
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