Posts tagged ‘affordable housing’

October 29, 2009

Homeownership Zone as an Affordable Assumption

At a point in time were the struggles of this nation have called for the working class as well as middle classed Americans to explore the potentials of affordable living practices. The uncertainty of housing as a concern has become a major issue of now as the affects of the recent foreclosure crisis and unemployment increases made the average assumption of financial conditions to bringing even middle class Americans to considering the 30 percent mean illustrated as a condition of affordable conditions.

The generally accepted definition of affordability is for a household to pay no more than 30 percent of its annual income on housing.

An estimated 12 million renter and homeowner households now pay more then 50 percent of their annual incomes for housing, and a family with one full-time worker earning the minimum wage cannot afford the local fair-market rent for a two-bedroom apartment anywhere in the United States. The lack of affordable housing is a significant hardship for low-income households preventing them from meeting their other basic needs, such as nutrition and healthcare, or saving for their future and that of their families. As the current times consider, low-incomed has hit an all time high as applications for newly funded programs are drawing record numbers of families seeking these options as money has become tighter than ever.

As funding concerns are being handled as of now as the economic worries of this nation come to the front of families trying to maintain other programs and options are being considered. We can not continue to afford to maintain ourselves as the cost of living and living standards are continually changing as the economic conditions of this nation are being tested as of now. The continual placement of affordable programs are needed to allow the people of this nation to continue under the assumption of living life with-out the changes made towards financial conditions as of now. This nation has not made adequate progress toward the goal of national housing
policy, as set out in the Housing Act of 1949. The supply of affordable rental housing is diminishing as the demand is ever rising.

To achieve the goal of national housing policy, there is a need to strengthen nationwide a cost-effective community-based housing partnership designed to expand the supply of rental housing that is affordable to very low-income and
low-income families, improve homeownership opportunities for low-income families.

The Home Program helps to expand the supply of decent, affordable housing for low- and very low-income families by providing grants to States and local governments called participating jurisdictions or “PJs”. PJs use their HOME grants to fund housing programs that meet local needs and priorities. HOME is the largest Federal block grant to State and local governments designed exclusively to create affordable housing for low-income households. Each year it allocates approximately $2 billion among the States and hundreds of localities nationwide.

June 27, 2009

Foreclosures rising homeless persons rates!

As this economic dilemma continues, the affects are being felt on financial forefronts that may have never been touched if this economic situation weren’t so harsh and widespread. The effects of the closing of this nations largest lending and mortgage banks along with the closing of this nations largest automobile maker has left america scrambling for answers as our falling economy brings froth the threat of homelessness to those that may have never though that this situation would affect them as working american citizens.

On June 26, 2009, the National Alliance to End Homelessness, along with six other homeless advocacy organizations, issued a joint report titled Foreclosure to Homelessness 2009. The purpose of this study was to better understand the connection between homelessness and the recent uptick in foreclosures.

Here are a few of the most note-worthy findings in the study, from the National Alliance to End Homelessness:

Non-housing service providers estimated that 20 percent of their clients experienced homelessness as a result of foreclosure

Housing providers (including emergency, transitional, and permanent housing) estimated that five percent of their clients experienced homelessness as a result of foreclosure

Ten percent of all respondents estimated that their clients experienced homelessness as a result of foreclosure

Since organizations that serve very low-income folks reported that a higher portion of their clients were affected by foreclosure, these numbers suggest that many people who lost their home to foreclosure are on the brink of becoming homeless. In other words, a family may utilize services, such as a food pantry or legal aid, prior to becoming homeless and seeking shelter.

As the rise in forclosures are making it become aparent that the threat of homelessness is a factor that those that may have not expected this to happen to them develop, the effort to aid those in this time of crisis is becoming harder and harder to due with the fact that funding considerations for such service organization have been suspended in certain states and areas across the nation.

If you are a person that is experiencing the threat of homelessness due to job loss and/or foreclosure contact your local workforce, homeless service provider, non-profit organization to learn of ways to becoming self-sufficient once again.

The following are some organizations designed to help with further resources and projects to aid the thousands of Americans affected by the current economic crisis that the nation is facing.

National Alliance to End Homelessness
1518 K Street NW, Suite 410
Washington, DC 20005
(Tel) 202. 638.1526
http://www.endhomelessness.org

National Coalition for the Homeless
2201 P St NW
Washington, DC 20037
Phone: 202.462.4822
http://nationalhomeless.org

Homeless Services Network of Central Florida
P.O. Box 547068
Orlando, FL 32854-7068
Phone: 407-893-0133
http://www.hsncfl.org

June 27, 2009

Affordable Housing, Florida Response

Dear Mr. Shaw,

Thank you for your recent email regarding funding for affordable housing in Florida. As your State Representative, I appreciate learning of your concerns.

The fiscal challenges we’re experiencing in Tallahassee are a symptom of a slowing economy nationwide, not just in Florida. We are facing an unprecedented $6.3 billion deficit for next fiscal year and will be forced to make tough decisions regarding Florida’s budget.

Let me be clear – I don’t relish the fact that we are being forced to make these tough decisions, but we were elected to serve in good times and in bad, and we are constitutionally mandated to balance the budget. Unlike the federal government, we cannot spend money that we do not have.

As you are aware, over the last ten years we have appropriated $2.8 billion for affordable housing programs. Unfortunately, with continued decreases in state revenues we do not have the resources to fully fund these programs this fiscal year. After much deliberation and consideration, the House’s budget proposal returns $123 million from the Florida Housing Finance Corporation to General Revenue in order to offset reductions to education, health care and public safety. This is a onetime transfer for the 2009-10 Fiscal Year and funding can be restored for next year. It is critical to understand that even though the House isn’t proposing to fund affordable housing this year, Florida will receiving over $559 million in federal stimulus money for affordable housing programs.

Our reductions to the Florida Housing Finance Corporation are not because we do not recognize the importance of affordable housing programs, but rather because we believe Florida is in a unique position at this time. For example, Florida currently has a surplus of 385,000 unsold homes on the market, which is 20 months of inventory. At a time when home prices are plummeting and there is an abundance of affordable housing, adding new housing can actually exacerbate the State’s economic problem. Home prices have also fallen about 20 percent in the past year, making it more affordable than ever to buy.

There are also federal, state and local housing programs that can help buyers purchase existing homes. In the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act the First-Time Homebuyer Tax Credit was increase from $7,500 to $8,000 for purchases on or after January 1, 2009, and before December 1, 2009. The Florida House also has legislation this year, House Joint Resolution 97, provides an additional homestead exemption for a homeowner the first time he or she establishes a homestead in Florida.

Again, thank you for taking the time to share your concerns regarding affordable housing funding. As we continue through the budget process I will keep your thoughts in mind. If I may be of assistance to you in any way, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Sincerely,

Representative Baxter G. Troutman