Housing News Roundup: November 15, 2018
In Virginia, Eviction Is a Matter of Race
A recent report found that across Virginia, about 60 percent of African American neighborhoods have an annual eviction rate four times the national average, even after controlling for income and property value. Advocates and researchers hypothesize that these disproportionate eviction rates among minority communities could result from the state’s low minimum wage, lack of rent control, and laws that advocates say favor landlords, among other factors.
Source: Washington Post
Post-9/11 Veterans Face Unique Housing Barriers
A new report highlights that veterans who served after 9/11 are more likely to struggle to afford homes, even more than previous generations of veterans. Fewer than half own their homes, and nearly 35 percent are cost burdened. Author Igor Popov notes that veterans assistance policies were not designed to address the needs of these veterans, who are unprecedently diverse and young. “Clearly, the 20th-century tactics being enacted are no longer viable when for solving the problems of 21st-century veterans,” he said.
Program Combines Housing and Other Supports to Help Families Prosper
Move to PROSPER, an initiative created by the Ohio State University City and Regional Planning program and other partners, provides stable housing to low-income mothers and their children through rent subsidies and life coaching. Families live in areas they wouldn’t otherwise have been able to afford, areas with highly rated school districts. Before moving, many families encountered daily emergencies, but things are different now: “One of the sentiments that I’ve been hearing from them, because they’re not stressed out and worried, is that they’re able to take care of their families,” said Rachel Kleit, chairwoman of the initiative’s steering committee.
Source: Columbus Dispatch
Homes Are Being Constructed in Areas Most Vulnerable to Climate Change, Scientists Suggest
A new report by Zillow and the research organization Climate Central, which studied areas of the country with the risk of regular flooding, found that housing construction is growing in vulnerable areas that are experiencing increased rainfall and stronger storms. The report found that roughly 10,000 homes built after 2009 will be at risk of flooding an average of once a year if global emissions are in line with the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement projections. “This is where rubber hits the road, where development is happening. And right now we’re really digging a deeper hole,” said Ben Strauss, chief scientist at Climate Central.
Providing Legal Counsel to Tenants Could Save Philadelphia Millions
A new study suggests that expanding legal representation for low-income tenants facing eviction could help tenants save Philadelphia $45.2 million a year in costs associated with homelessness, education, family instability, burdens on the court system, and more. The study also found that 78 percent of tenants with no aid are “disruptively displaced” when facing eviction and that providing legal counsel could prevent the displacement of more than 14,000 residents each year.