Share this article! Affordable housing has risen to the top of the legislative to do list. Portland mayor Charlie Hales has delared homelessness an emergency, and House Speaker Tina Kotek says housing is her priority for the 2016 legislative session. We asked readers to rank the seriousness of the problem, and to offer up a … Read more
Affordable housing has risen to the top of the legislative to do list. Portland mayor Charlie Hales has delared homelessness an emergency, and House Speaker Tina Kotek says housing is her priority for the 2016 legislative session. We asked readers to rank the seriousness of the problem, and to offer up a few fixes. Research partner CFM Strategic Communications conducted the poll of 287 readers in December.
Selected reader comments:
“Affordable housing has been a problem for decades. Minimum wage jobs mean that folks have to live 30 to 50 miles out in other communities, and in rural areas with no public transportation it creates another kind of poverty. Raise living wages for families.”
“Get government out of the way. The market forces of supply and demand will determine the appropriate cost, size, style and location of housing. Government imposing its will only upsets the existing economic forces and winds up picking winners and losers. Housing affordability is an indication of your economic worth to the community. If you cannot afford housing in the location that you want, maybe you need to make more money or move somewhere else.”
“Remove regulations and fees such that houses can be built faster and less expensively.”
“Property tax is the biggest issue associated with rents. Some years back I used a sort of formula to set rents based on 10% of tax values. I expected a net return equal to 5 months rent per year. Now I can’t get 2. I have refused to raise rents for 5 years but a time is coming….thanks to prop. tax and insurance. You want a fix? Treat rental property values differently.”
“Affordability varies: e.g. metro vs. rural. If we can encourage development in smaller communities housing costs would be lower, and the economic upswing would touch rural Oregon. There is great talk about expanding economic opportunity outside of major cities, but little is done. Consideration of rural economic expansion and expansion could both lift incomes in rural areas, and handle housing affordability. Like so many issues, housing affordability is entwined with many other issues.”
“Business (in Oregon and everywhere) needs customers and workers. If we allow high housing costs to restrict customer spending and keep workers geographically separated from their workplace, we hurt business. Wealth concentration hurts business growth in the long run.”
“Demand developers include affordable units.”
What do you think? Comment below regarding solutions to Oregon’s housing crisis. And click here to register for our upcoming panel discussion on the business of affordable housing.