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Ask the Builder: Coronavirus, you, and your home

By Tim Carter, Tribune Content Agency on

There's not a doubt in my mind that you've been directly affected by the current health crisis that's sweeping over the USA like some biblical plague. These are extraordinary times and they call for extraordinary effort from many of us, me included.

Several years ago, I was involved in a discussion with a dear friend. We are polar opposites on political issues. I think the discussion had to do with giving things to people who are less fortunate. My friend said to me, "From those to whom much is given, much is expected." She knew that God had blessed me with success with my building and media career. Her statement cut deep to the bone, but it rang true once I had cooled down.

Just because the economy has shut down for all intents and purposes, that doesn't mean the structural and mechanical problems and challenges at your own home have stopped. In fact, you may be more desperate now than you were a month ago.

Perhaps you don't want strangers coming to your house. I get that. The virus we're all battling is invisible. People who have COVID-19, the disease associated with the coronavirus, can infect other people before they show the telltale symptoms (if they ever show them at all).

Your challenge could be financial. So many are suffering. I get that. Just nine years ago, I had to face an incredible financial challenge of my own. I'm quite sensitive to this particular situation and understand the difficulty you might face.

This morning God sent me a vision of how I might be able to help you long distance. He told me that I need to radically alter my schedule, work longer hours, and that I need to step up to the plate to help you. He blessed me years ago with the ability to explain complex building issues in a way you can understand.


He also trained me on how to talk on the radio and in front of a camera. I did a two-hour live call-in radio show for 12 years, and I was the weekly home improvement expert on the ABC and NBC-TV affiliates in Cincinnati. It's time to brush off the dust from those past experiences to help you.

I've decided to devote two hours a day minimum calling homeowners all across the USA. You may need to know how to do a simple repair. I can help get you started over the phone.

Because money is tighter than a banjo string right now, you can't afford to buy something new so you need to know how to protect what you have. I can help. Or, if you are buying something, perhaps you want to know what the best product is so you don't waste precious money.

In many cases, a simple quick phone call may help you. In others, I may have to record a short video with some drawings as I made all those years ago sitting at future customers' dining room tables showing them how I was going to solve a particular issue when building their room addition or house.


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