Renovations ‘more than we expected’

Gagnons latest recipient of an Extreme Makeover project by The Home Team, one of its most ambitious projects yet.

Angie Gagnon (left) and her daughter Deandra organize their new kitchen Thursday after The Home Team renovated their home.

Angie Gagnon (left) and her daughter Deandra organize their new kitchen Thursday after The Home Team renovated their home.

Angie Gagnon smiles every time she glances over at her newly renovated living room from her newly renovated kitchen.

Her family was the latest recipient of an Extreme Makeover project by The Home Team, one of its most ambitious projects yet.

The Home Team is a non-profit community outreach program run by the Cornerstone Seventh Day Adventist Church in Coquitlam, Its goal is to better the lives of individuals and families in need.

One deserving family whose home is in need of repair is picked every year.

“This is wonderful,” Angie said after the Home Team invaded their house on Sept.  5, remodeling the main floor and tearing down the walls of their old house and garage, “much more than we ever expected done.”

Angie’s daughter Deandra, now 36, suffered a brain injury in a car crash eight years ago. Gagnon and her husband Mike then realized they would have to renovate their house to accommodate Deandra and her two sons, Anthony, now 17, and Austin, 13.

Although Mike, who runs a home-based furniture repair business, was able to add a  second story to the house and a new exterior surrounding the existing one, he was unable to complete the project, leaving the main floor unlivable.

For the past year and a half, the Gagnons have been living upstairs.

Now they have a finished open concept main floor with a new kitchen, living and dining room.

With the walls of the old house removed, they now have a 1,100-square-foot livable area, up from 800 square feet.

“When our friends come over we congregate in the kitchen,” Angie said about how much she loves having no walls now, giving the space a friendlier feel.

Deandra, who walks with a cane, is happy she won’t be stumbling into things anymore and feels safer with the new staircase.

“They built them for me,” said Deandra. “So I can go up and down without being scared.”