What other cities are doing about affordable housing

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Highlander
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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Post by Highlander » Fri Mar 16, 2018 6:53 pm

loftguy 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?

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.
Are any Kansas City neighborhoods gentrified to the point that higher property taxes forcing people out? Most of the larger urban neighborhoods growing rapidly were really never residential in the first place and those that were (e.g., Quality Hill) were apartments and are converting to more apartments. Most of the more well to do single family home neighborhoods in the KC core have barely expanded since I've been a kid (Hyde Park is essentially the same size it was 40 years ago) and only a few new areas are undergoing the beginnings of gentrification (West End and Beacon Hill) but even those are still a big mix of what is new and what was there before. The only really completely gentrified area in KC for single family homes is Union Hill and that is a very small neighborhood - like 4 square blocks and much of it on non previously non residential land.

I've been looking for a place to buy in KC for a couple of years and I would have to say, I've never seen an urban area like Kansas City with so very little housing offerings to upper middle class in it's core. There are tons of high rent apartments but KC is woefully lacking in good housing stock within the urban core, particularly north of the Plaza. Frankly, the city desperately needs gentrification, it needs urban neighborhoods with at least some wealth.
Last edited by Highlander on Fri Mar 16, 2018 6:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Post by DaveKCMO » Fri Mar 16, 2018 6:57 pm

I'm gonna say parts of the Westside and Beacon Hill are approaching that (it's likely "I've noticed a big increase" vs "I have to move because I can't afford to buy food anymore"). It takes a long time for property taxes to catch up with the market and I get a sense that a lot of Midtown neighborhoods haven't been hot long enough.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Post by flyingember » Sat Mar 17, 2018 10:23 am

Highlander wrote:
Are any Kansas City neighborhoods gentrified to the point that higher property taxes forcing people out? Most of the larger urban neighborhoods growing rapidly were really never residential in the first place and those that were (e.g., Quality Hill) were apartments and are converting to more apartments. Most of the more well to do single family home neighborhoods in the KC core have barely expanded since I've been a kid (Hyde Park is essentially the same size it was 40 years ago) and only a few new areas are undergoing the beginnings of gentrification (West End and Beacon Hill) but even those are still a big mix of what is new and what was there before. The only really completely gentrified area in KC for single family homes is Union Hill and that is a very small neighborhood - like 4 square blocks and much of it on non previously non residential land.

I've been looking for a place to buy in KC for a couple of years and I would have to say, I've never seen an urban area like Kansas City with so very little housing offerings to upper middle class in it's core. There are tons of high rent apartments but KC is woefully lacking in good housing stock within the urban core, particularly north of the Plaza. Frankly, the city desperately needs gentrification, it needs urban neighborhoods with at least some wealth.
Briarcliff will be one of the first.

It’s close to downtown (same distance as Midtown), schools have a good reputation and the eastern side has access to transit.

Prices are already higher per square foot than surrounding neighborhoods to the east and north.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Post by FangKC » Mon Mar 19, 2018 6:25 pm

The Next Housing Crisis: A Historic Shortage of New Homes

Fewer new houses are being built in America than at almost any time before; ‘It’s a good time to be here in Grand Rapids, if you can get a house’
America is facing a new housing crisis. A decade after an epic construction binge, fewer homes are being built per household than at almost any time in U.S. history.

Home construction per household a decade after the bust remains near the lowest level in 60 years of record-keeping, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.

...

Demand for housing is stronger than he has ever seen, he says, but land and construction costs have roughly doubled since the end of the last boom a decade ago.

...

A combination of tightened housing regulations, a lack of construction labor and a land shortage in highly prized areas is driving the crisis, according to industry experts.

Even during the deep recession of the mid-1970s and the downturn in the early 2000s, builders put up significantly more homes per U.S. household than they are constructing now, in the ninth year of an economic expansion. Only at the bottom of the 1981 and 1991 economic downturns were per-household construction levels near what they are now, according to Jordan Rappaport, an economist at the Kansas City Fed. He says the only period when the U.S. might have built fewer homes by population was during World War II.

...

The National Association of Home Builders estimates builders will start fewer than 900,000 new homes in 2018, less than the roughly 1.3 million homes needed to keep up with population growth. The overall inventory of new and existing homes for sale hit its lowest level on record in the fourth quarter of 2017, at 1.48 million, according to the National Association of Realtors.

That, in turn, is pushing up prices at what economists say is an unsustainable pace. The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller National Home Price Index rose 6.3% in 2017. That was roughly twice the rate of income growth and three times the rate of inflation.

...

Builders cite numerous factors contributing to the construction slump. A decadeslong push for young people to go to college has driven down trade-school enrollment, depriving builders of skilled labor. Declining numbers of immigrant construction workers have sapped builders of unskilled labor.

Builders in far-flung exurbs are encountering stiffer resistance from young buyers even as prices ratchet higher for land closer to cities. Economists say that in many large metropolitan areas, suburbanization might simply have reached its limits, as potential buyers increasingly reject long commutes. During the 1950s, buying a home in a new suburb, where land was plentiful and cheap, often meant driving half an hour to a job in the city. Today, commutes from new developments can be several times that long.

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Even metropolitan areas with more permissive approaches to building are lagging behind their historical construction levels. Housing permits in Memphis, Tenn., were 44% below their historical average in 2017, according to the latest Census figures analyzed by real-estate data firm Trulia, while permits in the Minneapolis metropolitan area were 16% below average.

...

Builders say this is partly because the wounds from the housing crash, when hundreds of local builders went out of business, haven’t healed. The number of members of the Home Builders Association of Greater Grand Rapids dropped from a peak of more than 1,300 in 2005 to fewer than 400 in 2012. Today, the association has just over 500 members.

Nationwide, membership in the National Association of Home Builders peaked at 240,000 in 2007, then dropped to 140,000 in 2012, where it has remained throughout the recovery.

...

A worsening labor shortage is adding to the problem. The construction workforce in the U.S. declined to 10.5 million in 2016, from 10.6 million in 2010, when the real-estate market was near bottom, according to an analysis of U.S. Census data by Issi Romem, an economist at BuildZoom, a startup that tracks construction data for building contractors.

Todd Peuler was hired 3½ years ago as a recruiter for Michigan building supplier Fox Brothers Co., a subsidiary of Beacon Roofing Supply Inc. Mr. Peuler says it takes about twice as long to build a house as it did in the past because of lag time waiting to find workers to complete tasks.

Sometimes, he says, clients are expecting to move in, but a house is still wrapped in plastic because workers are needed to put on siding.

“The workforce is in their 50s and 60s. They’re retiring and there’s no new bloodline coming in,” he says. “We didn’t get in this situation overnight, and it could take years to get out.”
https://www.wsj.com/articles/american-h ... 1521395460

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Post by mean » Mon Mar 19, 2018 7:15 pm

We're no longer rapidly throwing up low quality McMansions in exurban greenfields at a record pace, displacing wildlife, worsening automobile traffic, and encouraging coyotes to snack on domestic pets? What a crisis. Where's the Save 199th Street From Eventually Being Virtually Indistinguishable From 151st Street activists?

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Post by chaglang » Tue Mar 20, 2018 6:39 am

To gentrify, an area usually has to go from being below a certain median income/education level to above both. I know everyone knows this but someone mentioned Briarcliff and I don’t think that ever fit the low income/low education part of the equation. There was a 2011-ish study in Governing that found that only census tracts in South Hyde Park and Northeast were gentrifying. Given the development of the core since then I suspect that places like Beacon Hill and Squier Park would be on that list now. The Westside, even then, was already gentrified by their standards.

(Pushes glasses up the bridge of my nose) The other thing to remember is that there are different ways of defining gentrification, and everyone is having this discussion without defining what the word means. It’s like playing a game where everyone has different rules but nobody will say what their rules are. So there are solutions being brought up and discussed without any agreement on the problems you’re solving. Not trying to be a jerk, and I know everyone knows this. I just saw this thread falling into a common trap.

All that said, it is possible for changes to be happening in an area without it meeting any definition of gentrification. I’ve seen this in my neighborhood and posted about it somewhere here, maybe in the Hype Park thread. Gentrification often gets discussed as close to a yes/no thing, but neighborhoods move on a continuum of development that have different strategies appropriate for equity. Not every solution is right for every neighborhood on that continuum.
Last edited by chaglang on Tue Mar 20, 2018 8:29 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Post by DaveKCMO » Tue Mar 20, 2018 8:10 am

Nuance? Pshaw!

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Post by chaglang » Tue Mar 20, 2018 8:14 am

DaveKCMO wrote:Nuance? Pshaw!
:lol:
Here's a good, practical paper that runs through different solutions that can be implemented, based on where neighborhoods are in development/redevelopment :
https://shelterforce.org/2008/05/01/man ... od_change/

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Post by flyingember » Tue Mar 20, 2018 8:45 am

This article quotes Jane Jacobs, one of the most knowledgeable individuals on this subject ever.

http://www.nathanstorring.com/2014/10/2 ... ification/
Again, the poor, evicted or priced out by the higher costs of renovating, were victims. Affordable housing could have been added as infill in parking lots and empty lots if government had been on its toes, and if communities had been self-confident and vigorous in making demands, but they almost never were. Gentrification benefited neighborhoods, but so much less than it could have if the displaced people had been recognized as community assets worth retaining. Sometimes when they were gone their loss was mourned by gentrifiers who complained that the community into which they had bought had become less lively and interesting” (Jacobs, Dark Age Ahead, 214).
Notice the point on adding more types and prices of housing to an existing neighborhood.

This next article does a good job of covering the "what does gentrification mean" aspects. There's no doubt it's a complex subject and makes an interesting point buried in it.

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2016 ... -a-problem
gentrification needn’t be zero-sum, because gentrifying neighborhoods may become more densely populated, with new arrivals adding to, rather than supplanting, those currently resident.
But as for education level? While education plays a part in defining income, it's not the definition of if a neighborhood is gentrifying. Take someone who has a fine arts degree and someone who is an engineer. Their average income is vastly different even starting at graduation. The college educated artist is far more likely to live in the pre-gentrified neighborhood.

Here's a piece on artist space in KC that shows why this is. Half of KC artists are below the metro area median income level. This looks to be under about $27k annually. A starting artist salary is around $31k so there's going to be many college educated artists below the median. Oh, this certainly not the lowest income level for the urban core but it shows that having an education doesn't mean you're gentrifying an area if you're looking for affordable housing too.
http://kcur.org/post/according-new-surv ... s#stream/0


And one of your points about Briarcliff not gentrifying shows how you define areas depends on the area you define.
Briarcliff has a really high income level overall but you need to include Briarcliff West to get this. People who live in Dundee Hills don't live in Claymont Estates any more than Hyde Park and Valentine should be treated the same.

The older, more affordable parts of this neighborhood is seeing the home flipping-based price increases that often come with gentrification. One home just sold for $110k, got a renovation and is up for sale at $240k. That's bringing it up to the high end of the neighborhood. The same block is full of workers clearly just looking for affordable housing. And if you cross N. Oak into Crestview you have a clear lower income neighborhood.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Post by Critical_Mass » Tue Mar 20, 2018 11:03 am

serious question, why not housing vouchers for lower income housing instead of subsidies to the developers?
we don't charge less for groceries for individuals with low to no income. it is subsidized by food stamps or snap if you apply and qualify.
this allows qualifying individuals or families to live anywhere they feel they can afford, not designate certain units or entire buildings as low-income housing.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Post by chaglang » Tue Mar 20, 2018 2:10 pm

The statistical definitions of gentrification that I've seen have usually lumped education in with income (and duration at a current residence to track displacement) because there are valid, non-gentrification related explanations for any of those individually happening. It's not a precise thing from what I can tell.

On the vouchers- I think that there is an issue with some landlords not accepting them. Not 100% sure.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Post by FangKC » Wed Mar 21, 2018 3:32 am

Yes, there are not enough landlords who accept Section 8 vouchers. Residents who have vouchers often have difficulty finding housing--especially families requiring more than one bedroom. And as we know, it is very difficult to even maintain existing Section 8 units. Many neighborhoods are actively trying to get rid of the units that do exist.

I believe previous reporting has indicated that the City is losing more affordable housing units than are being created. Creation doesn't necessarily mean building new apartments. It simply means getting more landlords to accept Section 8 vouchers for their rental apartments/houses.

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Re: What other cities are doing about affordable housing

Post by kboish » Fri May 04, 2018 10:56 am


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