What other cities are doing about affordable housing

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What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby DaveKCMO » Tue Mar 13, 2018 8:06 am


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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby chingon » Tue Mar 13, 2018 8:33 am

I don’t understand how mostly abandoned cities can have affordable housing crises.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby DaveKCMO » Tue Mar 13, 2018 8:38 am

chingon wrote:I don’t understand how mostly abandoned cities can have affordable housing crises.


A city that was once abandoned -- and thus, probably cheap to live in -- may suddenly seem unaffordable to those who remained when the market starts to respond.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby chingon » Tue Mar 13, 2018 8:45 am

DaveKCMO wrote:
chingon wrote:I don’t understand how mostly abandoned cities can have affordable housing crises.


A city that was once abandoned -- and thus, probably cheap to live in -- may suddenly seem unaffordable to those who remained when the market starts to respond.


That seems like the world’s easiest policy fix (tax freeze on continuously occupied units under an economic threshold when tax value increases exceed a percentage threshold in a set number of years, am I missing something?). And is completely different from the Jenee Osterheldt’s of the world not getting to live in the apartment they want in the neighborhood they want and whining about it.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby flyingember » Tue Mar 13, 2018 10:54 am

Fixed property tax rates will create bigger problems.

Road, trash, etc costs don’t stay down because the city fixes m taxes. It discouraged new people entering into a neighborhood because the city has to raise rates on new owners over existing existing which will hurt sales.

The problem is average housing living costs. The solution is an excess of units so that owners are incentivised to compete on price. Home prices spike in a market where there’s tons of competiton without increasing home density like we’ve seen in JoCo.

Vancouver is a place to watch on housing costs. A tax on some unoccupied units is in play. Stop someone from buying a buildIng or unit and doing nothing with it.

We need to get people to build homes and have enough homes on the market that prices naturally stay down.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby loftguy » Tue Mar 13, 2018 12:48 pm

flyingember wrote:Fixed property tax rates will create bigger problems.

Road, trash, etc costs don’t stay down because the city fixes m taxes. It discouraged new people entering into a neighborhood because the city has to raise rates on new owners over existing existing which will hurt sales.


NO.
Taxing jurisdictions have a responsibility to all citizens, including those of limited income.
Property Tax hikes are among the most profound impacts of 'gentrification'.
We force people out of their homes or apartments by government pursuit of a $ windfall.
The moral and appropriate course is to judiciously freeze taxes on fixed or limited income long term ownership and tenancies.
At some point, those properties may become truly valuable to the degree that the owners choose to sell, in spite of tax abatement and then the jurisdictions can access their increase.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby flyingember » Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:27 pm

Why should the time of purchase mean citizens get a special deal on their taxes to keep them below the market yet be able to benefit from selling their home at market rates?

A need-based system is different and isn't just a blanket freeze.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby bobbyhawks » Tue Mar 13, 2018 4:36 pm

To me, the answer is somewhere in between. Completely freezing property taxes doesn't account for what would have happened to taxes in the neighborhood had it not been gentrified, and comparisons are very challenging to find (since comparable neighborhoods are likely in similar states of gentrification at any given time). We should respect those who invested in neighborhoods and find ways to shield them from the impact of exploding property taxes, but not indefinitely and with carefully considered limitations. What we should be more concerned about is that we backdoor so many tax hikes through property taxes in the first place because we are too cowardly/ignorant to admit the taxes are needed and would be more fairly raised via income.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby loftguy » Wed Mar 14, 2018 8:45 am

flyingember wrote:Why should the time of purchase mean citizens get a special deal on their taxes to keep them below the market yet be able to benefit from selling their home at market rates?

A need-based system is different and isn't just a blanket freeze.


"..judiciously freeze taxes on fixed or limited income long term ownership..."

I did not suggest a "blanket freeze".
I recommend a judicious use of tax abatement to allow people of varied incomes, backgrounds, vocations and cultures to be a continued part of our historic neighborhoods. In part because it is the 'right thing to do' but also because it results in a richer experience for everyone. The differences are a major part of what makes these changing neighborhoods attractive in the first place. My recommendation goes towards allowing that difference to continue and prevent wholesale change that makes it just another neighborhood.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby flyingember » Wed Mar 14, 2018 3:01 pm

loftguy wrote:I recommend a judicious use of tax abatement to allow people of varied incomes, backgrounds, vocations and cultures to be a continued part of our historic neighborhoods. In part because it is the 'right thing to do' but also because it results in a richer experience for everyone. The differences are a major part of what makes these changing neighborhoods attractive in the first place. My recommendation goes towards allowing that difference to continue and prevent wholesale change that makes it just another neighborhood.

Blockbusting didn't help the city and somehow the opposite is supposed to? Both are heavy handed actions meant to favor certain people.

Not everyone can afford their current home in the long run nor should we expect this. Not everyone should be expected to live in their same home until their death. If someone can't afford a doubling of taxes how can they afford to buy a new roof or to repaint? Should we accept diversity if it comes with unrepaired homes that need to be torn down?

I would argue that the east side needs to see increased demand for homes and new blood more than it needs current residents. I'm not saying they should all move but to provide economic diversity is going to require some people to move because they're priced out. Many more will find increasing property rates will help them stay in the home through higher dollar value home equity loans, more retail they can walk to, a need to increase transit coverage and such.


Go look at NKC for the model we want. This town is the example of how the east side could end up looking like. You don't find a black part of town and a white part of town in NKC.

It's highly historic, many homes date to the 1930s or before

It's become highly diverse from new residents moving in, not because of a massive tax incentive program keeping existing residents around. The high school is about half minority in recent years.

It has apartments, rental homes, row homes, large lots, small lots, limited off street parking, bus service and people can walk to work and the store.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby loftguy » Wed Mar 14, 2018 3:38 pm

Heavy handed actions?
Try red-lining and race terror for heavy handedness.

Historically and until only recently North Kansas City was a white enclave.
It was not abandoned and relegated to poor people who could afford nowhere else.
Your comparison has no relativity.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby flyingember » Wed Mar 14, 2018 3:47 pm

Exactly. Did they promote diversity through tax incentives for existing residents? No, the community embraced diversity and the good and bad that came with it.

Some residents doubtless got pushed out to increase economic diversity with Cityview and Northgate Village bringing higher cost housing into the town. The projects were approved on their merits, not trying to keep arbitrary residents in their homes.

It's a great example to show you need some pain to get where you want neighborhoods to be.

Heavy handed economic policies by government is not better than heavy handed redlining by banks. Both control who live in a community and hurt people who aren't on the receiving end of the policy.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby loftguy » Wed Mar 14, 2018 4:17 pm

I feel like I'm watching a dog chase his tail.
I'll go back to work now.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby phuqueue » Wed Mar 14, 2018 5:23 pm

flyingember wrote:Why should the time of purchase mean citizens get a special deal on their taxes to keep them below the market yet be able to benefit from selling their home at market rates?

Strongly agree, definitely think it's cool when poor people who maintained the neighborhood's building stock through decades of disinvestment by city/state/feds get priced out of their homes by newly arrived white yuppies. I don't see why we should give these people a special deal on their taxes, that's something we should only reserve for powerful real estate developers building downtown condos to cater to -- surprise -- white yuppies. Man I simply love to do gentrification.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby flyingember » Thu Mar 15, 2018 12:13 pm

phuqueue wrote:
flyingember wrote:Why should the time of purchase mean citizens get a special deal on their taxes to keep them below the market yet be able to benefit from selling their home at market rates?

Strongly agree, definitely think it's cool when poor people who maintained the neighborhood's building stock through decades of disinvestment by city/state/feds get priced out of their homes by newly arrived white yuppies. I don't see why we should give these people a special deal on their taxes, that's something we should only reserve for powerful real estate developers building downtown condos to cater to -- surprise -- white yuppies. Man I simply love to do gentrification.


I know you're being sarcastic but gentrification is what the city has spend the past 20 years trying to gain. Everything this forum focuses on is new development, not tearing down houses, transit. It all encourages gentrification. A developer getting TIF is how you keep people in their homes. No TIF for developers is how you see dramatic rental rate increases.


Besides, there's no tax incentive program on property taxes that would provide any real benefit. Did you think through how little such a program would do for people?

I picked a random house at 2444 Wabash. They pay $367 per year in property taxes.
Their tax benefit for a 50% jump in value would be $180 per year.

If you want to make a real impact come up with a grant for home improvements. Helping people get interest free loans or grants for a new furnace will go a lot farther.

It's not unrealistic to run into a lot of homes in the urban core with asbestos wrapped ducts so $6000 for a furnace replacement is in the realm of reality.

That tax credit on the most extreme cases would pay for new furnace in 33 years. That's not going to dramatically help someone stay in their home.

If you want to help the community find ways to help people improve their home so when they get too old to handle stairs or driving they live in a neighborhood people want to move into.


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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby flyingember » Thu Mar 15, 2018 3:17 pm



Very good news

Here's another one from a few years ago showing a need to rethink what neighborhoods look like
http://theprovince.com/life/homes/const ... ller-homes

The empty tax plan is meant to increase availability too. it doesn't apply if you rent the unit.
http://vancouver.ca/home-property-devel ... s-tax.aspx


I don't see how these ideas can ever work for KC if we try to help people stay in a specific home no matter what.

Take someone aging out of their home. There's few neighborhoods anywhere in the city where they can find housing that's appropriate. There's some bright spots like NKC where senior living is available down the street, but this is rare overall.

We need to embrace the idea that our problem isn't the cost of the taxes it's that we have created an unsustainable housing policy connected to zoning and trying to maintain a certain mid-century neighborhood style where not everyone can afford to live for their entire life. This is precisely what those articles show Vancouver doing. The dollars involved isn't creating 2000 sq ft homes at 50,000x but is creating more variety so more people can afford a place to live.

If you have blocks where half the lots are empty and it costs $250-300k to build a new single family home of the same style increases the problem. I know I'm circling back to the JoCo problem but even places like OP or Leawood recognize this and are embracing apartment buildings that would fit into midtown instead of more of the same.

The trick is not creating Soviet-style apartment blocks or giant North St. Louis apartment blocks. That's why I like the idea of row homes, micro houses, garden apartments and small 3-4 story apartment buildings in a Houston-style replacement. Much greater chance of neighborhood diversity if we build diversity of housing.

No one is assured of staying in their home. That income and health means you should be thinking of a house as serving your present needs and things can change. To support this we should be designing zoning and housing policy so people have a good chance of staying in the same neighborhood even if it means moving multiple times in their lives.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby FangKC » Thu Mar 15, 2018 8:52 pm

The data tell the real downtown housing story

Maintaining existing affordable housing stock and increasing that inventory are critical to the sustainability and continued growth of greater downtown Kansas City.

...
▪ At the end of 2016, there were 14,189 total rental housing units in greater downtown, and growth continues. According to census data, 6,055 or 42.6 percent of those housing units are considered affordable, according to HUD criteria.
...

These data paint a picture of a downtown with a healthy mix of affordable and market-rate housing.

With its residents paying a median 41 percent of their income for housing and transportation, versus 48 percent in the whole city, downtown rates as the most affordable neighborhood in our region, and among the most affordable in the nation. Downtown is also our most diverse neighborhood, with 53 percent of its population a cross section of African-American, Hispanic, Asian, Native American and those of mixed ancestry — almost twice as diverse as any other part of our region.

And currently, 41 percent of the 26,000 residents in greater downtown are millennials — the largest percentage in any neighborhood in the metropolitan area. As you move away from the city center, the percentage drops to 26 percent for Kansas City, and 22 percent for the greater region. Younger generations are our future and we must be competitive to retain them.
...

Today, the greatest threat to affordable housing begins with the state of Missouri’s ill-conceived refusal to allocate funds for Low-Income Housing Tax Credits, or LIHTC, which are essential to the development of new affordable inventory.

Right now, a 400-unit LIHTC, rent-restricted, affordable housing project planned for the Central Business District is unable to advance without those credits. We should be sounding the alarm. An effective strategy would be to unite as a community to educate legislators on why affordable housing and these tax credits are so important.

LIHTC obligations on existing inventory will be expiring over the next several years. Property owners will be reviewing their options on what the next iteration will be: continuing as affordable, converting to market rate, or another use. Many will determine that the upward trajectory in rent doesn’t justify the investment required to make their properties competitive.

...


http://www.kansascity.com/opinion/readers-opinion/guest-commentary/article205214984.html

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby FangKC » Fri Mar 16, 2018 12:55 am


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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Postby flyingember » Fri Mar 16, 2018 8:22 am

FangKC wrote:The data tell the real downtown housing story

Maintaining existing affordable housing stock and increasing that inventory are critical to the sustainability and continued growth of greater downtown Kansas City.


Growth isn't going to come if the city tries to renege on the deals it made that lets rental prices increase after a period of time. This will discourage new affordable housing development.

We should never expect to maintain affordable housing but to need to replace it frequently. Doesn't mean it can't be a block over but to expect to endlessly have the same home costs in a specific location in an increasingly dense part of town as operational costs increase on a building is simply not possible.

Today, the greatest threat to affordable housing begins with the state of Missouri’s ill-conceived refusal to allocate funds for Low-Income Housing Tax Credits, or LIHTC, which are essential to the development of new affordable inventory.


If a single tax credit can upend development then we need to figure out how to not need tax credits. This is why increasing market demand to keep prices low through availability is our best bet.

Greater opportunity in housing will keep this from happening.

Many will determine that the upward trajectory in rent doesn’t justify the investment required to make their properties competitive.

This is saying that affordable housing will become shabby and rundown. If that's what maintaining affordable housing means why do we want this?


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