In many cities around the world, affordable housing is becoming a bigger discussion. But despite the high demand, politicians, developers, and community leaders are still working on a permanent solution. With more and more people searching for cheaper places to live, it only makes sense for communities to support low-cost housing projects to create enduring living places and help many families and individuals get a financial breathing room.
For a growing community, the lack of low-cost housing can contribute to several issues such as the neighborhoods’ economic mobility and health. In this blog, we’ll share with you some housing affordability solutions that are recommended by housing advocates and government leaders.
Make use of housing trust funds
Housing trust funds are great solutions for meeting the community’s specific housing needs. It can generally fund various activities, often used to support the production and preservation of low-cost housing. In other words, this type of distinct funds helps provide families and individuals access to decent homes. The great thing about them is that they are highly flexible, allowing communities to develop different housing-related campaigns. Housing trust funds are primarily designed to help very low-income households.
Offer extra support to most affected citizens
Affordable housing initiatives require a community-focused approach. This means there’s definitely more than just building or providing low-cost residential properties. You’d also need to dive deeper into citizen assistance, from helping them get through financial challenges to obtaining better nutrition. A great example would be helping out families and individuals facing huge financial difficulties. Help them get access to a collection attorney to take care of their debt problems. Such experts can also provide professional advice on the best way to regain financial stability.
Or, you can focus on supporting the local workforce by developing better public transportation or more road access so that people get to their jobs conveniently. You can also conduct community programs centered on specific problems that most families in the community face. This is an excellent way to figure out the other factors preventing people from affording even the most reasonably-priced housing.
Identify remaining structural inequalities
Apart from determining the individual financial problems of your citizens, it’s equally crucial to address existing structural inequality. Crises these days are often a result of past inequalities, making historical awareness essential. Pay attention to the links between affordable housing and racial inequality so your community can properly address them. Economic developers reveal that there are still structures built on race that can constantly worsen the low-cost housing crisis if communities continue to ignore them. If this is a concern in your community, shape your future housing projects around it.
Consider neighborhood revitalization
Every resident of a community desires affordable and decent homes for their families. They need a place to get healthy food and a place where they can thrive. One approach used by numerous communities today is neighborhood revitalization. This people-focused strategy aims to lead community projects based on the concerns of the citizens. A perfect example would be buying vacant or unused properties within the local area and converting them into low-cost housing projects.
Some communities also run housing counseling programs to help homeowners address their problems related to acquiring, financing, owning, or maintaining a house. Apart from housing, other focus areas included in neighborhood revitalization are transportation, economic opportunities, health, education, and safety. This means it can also be used for reopening and rehabbing stores and schools within the area.
Prioritize location of new projects
Providing housing project that offers lower rents or fees would be useless if the residents have to spend more bucks on transportation. Housing location has been a popular discussion. Experienced community leaders recommend focusing on building new essential establishments and services such as retail amenities and commercial or office spaces. It’s not reasonable to develop housing just for the sake of it.
Communities should also focus on where it is situated. It must be close to transportation, child care, jobs, healthcare, and other opportunities. By providing stable and safe housing in a convenient location, more money will be spent on local businesses and families can have better access to their daily essential needs.
Access to affordable housing is not just about helping families and individuals free up their tight budgets and get funds for food and healthcare. It can also greatly contribute to the improvement of people’s physical and mental well-being. By prioritizing low-cost housing in your community, you’ll help many residents live a healthier and happier life.