News Round-Up: Something Has to Give

In this week’s News Round-Up, we find that one thing remains true for American cities large and small: there is not enough housing affordable to lower income people.

According to HUD, the Washington, D.C. has the second highest rents in the country, which matches with the Coalition finding that the D.C. metropolitan region has the nation’s 10th most expensive rents. In Marshall, a town of 24,000 in eastern Texas, low income renters face the same challenges as their counterparts in the nation’s capitol. With 22% of area residents living at or below the poverty line, many families are cost burdened by their rents. As an expert interviewed for this story says,  “’If you’re spending 50 percent on housing, it simply doesn’t work. Something has to give.’”

Minimum wage workers are among those Americans having the hardest time finding housing they can afford. Even with an increase in the minimum wage, like the one signed into law in Rhode Island recently, low wage workers will have a difficult time finding an apartment they can afford on the private market. A law in Massachusetts requires 10% of housing stock in cities and towns must be affordable. This article shows that while some towns struggle to meet the target, others have found success, making it possible for more people of all incomes to live stable lives in that state.

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