Affordable housing

County to Explore Renter Protections Amid Affordable Housing Crisis

The Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to explore policies aimed at expanding affordable housing options and protecting renters, calling it part and parcel of the fight against homelessness.

Supervisor Hilda Solis recommended the study.

"Countless residents in the unincorporated areas of my district have experienced skyrocketing rental rates in their neighborhoods," she said. "We need more tools to secure housing stability for the most vulnerable county residents."

New Report Details Sonoma County Renters' Woes

A new report by state housing advocates quantifies the woes affecting Sonoma County’s rental market, including how far rents have outpaced incomes.

Sonoma County’s median renter saw wages decline 6 percent from 2000 to 2015, when adjusted for inflation, according to the California Housing Partnership. In the same period, the county’s median rent increased 16 percent.

The gap, derived from U.S. Census data, resulted in a net decline in overall purchasing power of $5,580 for the median renter, whose annual income was $49,921.

What Bills Have Been Introduced to Address California's Housing Crisis?

California’s housing crisis is a hot topic for both residents and lawmakers — and for good reason, too.

Earlier this year, the California Department of Housing and Community Development published a report that uncovered a pretty bleak future for the state’s housing. According to the report, about 1.8 million new homes need to be built between 2015 and 2025 to meet the state’s projected population growth.

S.F. Supervisors Compromise on Affordable Housing

A yearlong battle in San Francisco City Hall ended Wednesday night when two factions on the Board of Supervisors reached a compromise on how much affordable housing to require in new market-rate developments.

The agreement between progressive Supervisors Aaron Peskin and Jane Kim, and moderate Supervisors London Breed, Ahsha Safai and Katy Tang, will require that 18 percent of the rental units be affordable in all projects approved between now and January. That quota will rise to 19 percent at the beginning of next year, and to 20 percent in 2019.

Deal Reached on Inclusionary Zoning Separates Levels for Incomes, Neighborhoods

City supervisors reached a consensus late Wednesday on inclusionary housing requirements that they say strikes a balance between developers and affordability advocates.

The agreement would decrease the percentage of affordable housing that developers must build on site under Proposition C, which passed last June, except for in the two neighborhoods most impacted by the housing crisis until further study.

Mayor Lee To Spend $44 Million on S.F. Teacher Housing

San Francisco is finally responding to the teacher housing crisis with a brick-and-mortar solution from Mayor Ed Lee, who announced Thursday that he will spend $44 million to build homes for public school educators.

Criticizing city and school officials for taking too long to roll out a plan to build teacher housing, the mayor found local funding to put toward building 135 affordable units at the former Francis Scott Key Elementary School in the Outer Sunset.

Tiny Apartments Could Help Ease Sacramento's Affordable Housing Crisis

With local rent prices through the roof, one local builder says he has a solution to Sacramento’s affordable housing crisis: offer tiny, inexpensive, apartments to Downtown’s working people.

Apartments would go for $600 a month, but this downtown building isn’t catering to low-income earners.

Tim Bourke is a local barista, making minimum wage plus tips—pretty much, working to pay rent, he says.

“The increasing rent is getting tougher and tougher to live in downtown,” he says.

L.A. Approves 'A Path to Legalization' for Some Bootlegged Apartments

Year after year, Los Angeles has forced hundreds of illegal or “bootlegged” apartments to be shuttered, even as local politicians bemoan a housing crisis.

Now the city is easing the way to legalize such apartments, a plan long championed by an unusual alliance of landlords and tenant activists.

The Los Angeles City Council voted Wednesday to approve a new law that smooths the way for landlords to get approval for bootlegged apartments — existing units that were created without the city’s blessing — if they guarantee affordable housing on the site.

SRO Owners Sue City Over Short-Term Rentals

A group of residential hotel owners filed suit against the city of San Francisco Monday seeking to block recently approved legislation intended to make it harder for them to rent rooms to tourists.

The legislation, introduced by Supervisor Aaron Peskin and approved by the Board of Supervisors in February, extends the minimum stay for single-room occupancies dictated in The City’s 1981 SRO ordinance from a week to 32 days in most cases. It also steps up penalties and enforcement for hotels violating city rules.

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