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US housing crisis: challenges and solutions
Feb 23, 2024
US housing crisis: challenges and solutions San Francisco
By   Internet
  • City News
  • US Property
  • Housing Crisis
  • Housing Market Challenges
Abstract: Recently, the Ethnic Minority Media Service Centre (EMS) held a press conference to discuss the current housing issues that are of great concern.

Despite declining inflation and unemployment, many people are still suffering from high living costs, especially housing.

At the conference, Rob Warnock, Senior Research Associate at Apartment List, pointed out that house prices across the US have significantly outpaced income growth, largely due to the huge impact of the epidemic on supply and demand. During the epidemic, many people who were planning to sell their properties chose to hold off while demand for home ownership increased, causing house prices to start soaring in mid-2022 and are now up more than 45 per cent from the pre-epidemic period.

Alarmingly, more than half of renters are already paying more than 30 per cent of their income in rent. However, as the Federal Reserve's interest rate hikes took hold and a construction boom began across the U.S., rents have gradually declined by 4% and nearly 500,000 new flats have entered the market.

Warnock predicts that about 1 million new flats will hit the market in the next 1-2 years, which is expected to stabilise rents and house price trends to some extent.

Nathan Ganeshan, founder of aid organisation Community Seva, also spoke at the conference about the Traveller community, which is currently experiencing increasing housing problems.

US housing crisis: challenges and solutions


He pointed out that even in affluent areas like the Bay Area, such as Silicon Valley, housing problems still plague many people. Statistics show that while California accounts for only 12 per cent of the nation's population, Travellers make up 28 per cent of the nation's Traveller population.

Since 2013, Community Seva has helped around 320,000 Travellers by providing a variety of assistance such as hot meals, blankets, sleeping bags, grocery gift cards, hygiene products and temporary shelter.Ganeshan stressed that people should not forget the importance of basic needs, and that the issue of housing is closely linked to basic needs such as food and hygiene.

He pointed out that there are 10,000 Travellers in Santa Clara County alone, more than a quarter of whom are hungry. As a wave of layoffs from tech companies sweeps through the area, more and more people are being forced to live in their cars and in the open. One Traveller has said, "I can get another job, but the chances of having shelter again after losing my house are slim to none."

Building more affordable housing is one of the solutions to the challenges posed by the housing problem. The government and the private sector should work more closely together to encourage housing construction through favourable policies and incentives, especially for low-income earners and the Traveller community.

At the same time, it is a sign of social responsibility to increase assistance to vulnerable groups by providing basic housing and necessities. Only through joint efforts can the adverse social impact of housing problems be mitigated and more equitable and inclusive social development be achieved.

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US housing crisis: challenges and solutions