Circle of life: Members renovate house to bring mom home
MANNING, Iowa—Kim Wiederin’s mom has faced a series of health complications, with costly bills at every turn.
For Kim and her husband, Shawn, the decision was clear.
It was time to help.
“She never wanted to be a burden, but she’s not a burden,” Kim said. “For me, it’s like the circle of life. She took care of me as a kid. And now she needs me.”
Bringing Mom home
The Wiederins wanted to invite Mom to live with them. But their Manning home wasn’t accessible for her.
So they got to work.
They updated the flooring throughout their home, making it easier for Kim’s mom to get around. They remodeled their main-floor bathroom, adding a walk-in tub and updated fixtures. And they added a ramp to make their home more accessible.
Kim’s mom left an assisted living facility this spring and moved in with her family. The Wiederins’ adult daughters live just blocks away, so she’s surrounded by love and family.
“It’s been good to have her around. She’s not alone,” Kim said. “And she can be part of the great-grandkids’ lives.”
As a bonus, their updates have made it easier for their grandson, who uses a wheelchair, to visit.
Facing the bills
But all of the updates came with a price.
They paid for the expenses, along with some medical bills, with higher-rate credit cards and a personal loan. And the Wiederins were feeling the pinch.
That’s when they turned to their financial cooperative.
Dupaco’s Michelle Steffes helped them consolidate their debt into one payment. The renovations increased the value of their home, so they could borrow against the equity in their home and cut their payments in half.
“It gave us some financial relief so we can make sure mom is taken care of,” Kim said. “We’re working to pay that down now. By having a line of credit, we can borrow against it when we need it.
It’s good to have it as a backup.”
‘We’re all thankful’
It’s not the first time the credit union has helped her family, Kim said.
A few years ago, the Wiederins turned to Dupaco as a last-ditch effort to buy their home after being turned away elsewhere.
Dupaco helped the first-time credit union members with their home purchase. But they also learned more about budgeting, credit-building and saving automatically.
Later, Dupaco helped them buy their teenage son’s truck and build his credit too.
“All of my kids have joined Dupaco now,” Kim said. “We’re all thankful for how Dupaco has helped us.”