The Center for Housing Policy is the research affiliate of the National Housing Conference.
A companion study just released by the National Association of Counties (NACo) and funded by Freddie Mac — “Paycheck to Paycheck: Wages and Cost of Housing in the Counties, 2004” —identified Flagler County, FL (the Daytona Beach metropolitan area), Fulton County (Atlanta metro area) and Buncombe County, NC (the Asheville area) as especially problematic housing areas for the occupations listed above.
For example, an income of $51,000 was needed to qualify for the median-priced home of $164,100 in the Daytona Beach area, where police had a median income of under $31,000, firefighters around $33,000 and elementary school teachers $40,000.
Serious affordable housing shortages were also reported in many of the largest and fastest growing jurisdictions in the country.
Approximately 85% of the county officials noted that most new housing in their counties is geared to middle- and upper-income households, not working families. “The most pervasive barriers to creating affordable housing, reported by three-quarters of the counties, were Not in My Backyard attitudes (NIMBY-ism) and lack of public funding,” the report said.
The survey was completed by 98 counties and low- to moderate-income families were defined as those earning between the national minimum wage of $10,712 and the national median household income of $42,209.
Seven out of 10 officials participating in the NACo poll said that affordable housing for working families was a “very big” or “fairly big” issue for their community. Housing shortages, they said, have been accompanied by such related problems as long commutes (45%), difficulty among local businesses in attracting and retaining workers (40%) and traffic congestion (30%).
Four out of 10 counties said that they have seen an increase in the number of working families applying for housing assistance. And more than one-quarter said that the scarcity of affordable housing had caused crowding and the “doubling up” of working families in some communities.
[ Go to Top ]