Affordable housing essay: Affordable housing is everybody’s problem

Affordable housing essay: Affordable housing is everybody’s problem

Editor’s note: This essay is part of a series by which local experts were asked: “What would it take to solve the Asheville area’s affordable housing problem?”

Our community is facing a crisis. In accordance with a recent study, Buncombe County has an effective zero percent vacancy rate for rental housing. Here at Homeward Bound, we’ve certainly noticed this trend. Every day, our case managers strive to find safe, affordable places for our clients to live. Now, however, we just cannot find those homes.

This situation puts the lives of a number of our community’s most members that are vulnerable risk. Living in the streets for very long periods of time exacerbates chronic behavioral and physical health problems that often result in premature death.

However the lack of affordable housing doesn’t just impact the most vulnerable. Affordable housing is vital for the veterans that are homeless served our country in Afghanistan and Iraq, for the police and firefighters who make our community safe. It’s for the waiter who served you dinner night that is last for the small-business owner who sold you an attractive painting a week ago, when it comes to nurse who took proper care of your mother into the hospital.

And whilst you might not think that you are able to a difference in this conversation or be effective in enhancing the number of affordable housing within our community, it is possible to! We require you to advocate to get more affordable housing, to ensure most of our neighbors have safe, affordable places to live. If you know people who own rental properties, encourage them to do business with Homeward Bound along with other service providers. Confer with your neighbors, and convince them that adding affordable housing units to your neighborhood causes it to be richer and more diverse.

You can make a big change!

Brian K. Alexander
Executive Director
Homeward Bound of WNC Inc.

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2 ideas on “ Affordable housing essay: Affordable housing is everybody’s problem ”

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