Wake up America! We have an affordable housing crisis!
Monday, November 18, 2019
Posted by: Carly Cahur
Wake up America! We have an affordable housing crisis! There is not a single city in America that has sufficient affordable housing for the demand! Nearly two-thirds of renters can’t afford to buy a home. Home prices are rising 2x faster than employee wages. This equation is a recipe for disaster ultimately leading to more evictions and homelessness. Today 11 million Americans spend over 50% of their income on rent.
What was once the America Dream of homeownership is quickly becoming an American nightmare. If you need proof with your own eyes… go visit, Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles or New York City. The streets are filled with sleeping bags, tents, hypodermic needles, the smell of excrement and marijuana wafting through the air.
The root cause of insufficient housing supply is because baby boomers are living longer and staying independent longer. Meanwhile Millennials post-recession are having a tough time finding good employment and tend to live with their parents longer than previous generations.
While there is no magic wand or easy solution, we can all do out part to make ourselves aware and potentially part of the solution. Tax deed investors have opportunities to renovate vacant and abandoned properties or supply affordable housing solutions on vacant foreclosed land.
Presenting at the International Association of Assessing Officers Conference in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Lydia McEvoy, Clay County Missouri Tax Collector and Brad Westover, National Tax Lien Association’s Executive Director addressed viable solutions to affordable housing including:
Local governments in America through policy change can also take an active role in solving the affordable housing crisis. Most local building codes are not consistent of what modern America wants. Both Baby Boomers and Millennials are demanding walkable urban living. Most building codes need to be rewritten to allow for “missing middle housing” a transformative concept to allow more housing units that are sustainable, walkable places.
The solutions start with awareness of the problem. Urban sprawl where America’s most vulnerable residents must drive the furthest distance from home to work simply exasperates the problem. Building mixed use, middle market housing is what America needs today. They say the best time to build a forest was 20 years ago, the next best time is today. Let’s focus today on being part of the solution through education and action!