Housing Needs Report Reveals Depths Of Affordable Housing Shortage
Thursday, May 27, 2021
Photo by Alexandra Rangel
Local housing advocates are calling on the state to help preserve affordable housing.
A recent housing needs report from the California Housing Partnership revealed more than 100,000 low income renters do not have access to affordable housing.
Stephen Russell with the San Diego Housing Federation believes preserving affordable homes is one of the answers to San Diego’s housing shortage.
“It identified a need for 132,000 homes — that’s 132,000 households paying too much in rent,” Russell said.
The report comes days after the Conrad Prebys Foundation sold nearly 6,000 affordable homes to Blackstone Group.
Russell says if history repeats itself, with previous purchases from the group, more than likely those 6,000 units will be upgraded, which then leads to an increase in rent.
“We would like to see them reinvest in the very communities that they just dis-invested from. We’d like to see them put forward resources to help these families stay in place,” he said.
The housing federation is hoping state leaders will help with the housing crisis the county is facing.
“We’re also asking that out of the state budget, a $500 million fund for acquisition and preservation of existing affordable housing be made,” Russel said.
Laura Fernea with the City Heights Community Development Corporation says even with an eviction moratorium in place, she’s still seen families who can't afford rent evicted from their home.
A huge problem is that tenants don't know their rights. Fernea says the City Heights Community Development Corporation has developed an eviction prevention program.
“We have weekly workshops about tenants rights so they can learn about what is right when they get harassment from a landlord, a notice, or something they don't understand,” she said.
She says those interested in the program can visit housinghelpsd.org for more information.
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