Harvard’s Joint Center on Housing – New Report: America’s Rental Housing: Evolving Markets and Needs

forrentReleased ~ Dec. 9, 2013

Rental housing has always provided a broad choice of homes for people at all phases of life. The recent economic turmoil underscored the many advantages of renting and raised the barriers to homeownership, sparking a surge in demand that has buoyed rental markets across the country. But significant erosion in renter incomes over the past decade has pushed the number of households paying excessive shares of income for housing to record levels.

Link to report: http://www.jchs.harvard.edu/research/publications/americas-rental-housing-evolving-markets-and-needs

HCD Funded Project is an Award Finalist

ULI Global Award Finalist: St. Joseph’s Senior Apartments

ULIThe Urban Land Institute (ULI) has named St. Joseph’s Senior Apartments, a BRIDGE development, as a finalist for the 2013 ULI Global Awards for Excellence.

Located in Oakland, CA, St. Joseph’s is one of 27 finalists in the worldwide competition, which recognizes real estate projects that achieve a high standard of excellence in design, construction, economics, planning and management. The ULI jury will announce the award winners at its fall meeting in November 2013.

St. Joseph’s Senior Apartments provides 84 affordable rental apartments for low-income seniors and 3,200 square feet of commercial space within the former main building of Oakland’s historic “St. Joseph’s Home for the Aged.” BRIDGE leveraged this deteriorating asset to create affordable infill housing while preventing the loss of a significant landmark. The rehabilitation and adaptive reuse of the Main Building included seismic upgrades and complies with the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation of Historic Properties.

Many apartments feature historic windows and impeccably restored architectural details, while on-site amenities include a spacious community room on the ground floor facing a courtyard, community garden and sunny lobby areas with seating. In keeping with its commitment to quality of life for residents, BRIDGE offers programs such as social service referrals, stretch yoga, craft activities and transportation services to the seniors who live at the property.

“We are honored to be a finalist for this prestigious award,” said Cynthia A. Parker, President and CEO of BRIDGE Housing. “The St. Joseph’s affordable development preserves an important historic landmark in Oakland’s San Antonio neighborhood, and the entire campus provides a true multigenerational housing community.”

Adjacent to St. Joseph’s Senior Apartments, BRIDGE is developing 62 affordable apartments for families that will be complete in the fall of 2013.

“From an impressive array of submissions, ULI’s Global Awards Jury selected 27 outstanding projects, each of which positively impacts its larger community — sometimes modestly, but often massively,” said Jury Chairman M. Leanne Lachman, President of real estate consulting firm Lachman Associates LLC in New York, NY.  “All projects exhibit innovations in design, sustainability, adaptability to their surroundings, financial solidity, and provision of enjoyment to their many users. In one way or another, each finalist wowed the jury, which will make selection of the winners a real challenge.”

The competition is part of the Institute’s Awards for Excellence program, established in 1979, which is based on ULI’s guiding principle that the achievement of excellence in land use practice should be recognized and rewarded. ULI’s Awards for Excellence recognize the full development process of a project, not just its architecture or design. The criteria for the awards include leadership, contribution to the community, innovations, public/private partnership, environmental protection and enhancement, response to societal needs, and financial viability.

HCD Web News – April 5, 2013

HCD Web News is an electronic clipping service which features stories related to California and national housing and community development related issues. HCD staff compiles current news sources on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.


April 5, 2013   



SACRAMENTO BUSINESS JOURNAL: Elk Grove offering $2M in loans for affordable housing project

By Ben Van der Meer // The city of Elk Grove is looking for someone to build affordable housing, and has $2 million in loans to get the ball rolling. City officials posted a request for proposals for such projects Wednesday morning, with proposals due by May 1. The request does not specify the number of housing units to be built or a location …

HEALTHY CAL.ORG: Despite years of advocacy, some farmworker housing still deplorable

By Rosa Ramirez // …Advocates and industry leaders say farmworkers housing in California is uneven. The Central Valley, a 450-mile stretch of incredibly fertile and agriculturally rich land, has the largest number of the state’s farmworkers, of which the great majority are Hispanic immigrants. Their housing needs are vast. In poorer rural parts of Riverside County, illegal mobile parks without running water … Continue reading

HCD’s Financial Assistance Programs Annual Report 2011-12

HCD Logo - LargeHCD awarded 408 loans and grants for over $419 million during FY 2011-12.  These funds are expected to help build, rehabilitate, or provide infrastructure for more than 5,900 rental and owner-occupied homes across the state.  Of these, more than 4,900 will be subject to contractual rent or cost limits to ensure they remain affordable to low and moderate-income households.    Other accomplishments include, but are not limited to, homeless shelter spaces, supportive and transitional housing for people who need assistance services as well as a place to live, migrant farmworker housing, and rent assistance vouchers.

The Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) Financial Assistance Programs Annual Report, Fiscal Year 2011-12, is available on the HCD website at:  http://www.hcd.ca.gov/fa/Annual_Report_11-12_FINAL_22_Feb_13.pdf.


National Low Income Housing Coalition: “Out of Reach” Report

Each year, Out of Reach demonstrates that large numbers of low income renters cannot afford the cost of living in the cities and towns where they work. This edition underscores the challenges facing the lowest income renters….  In California, the Fair Market Rent (FMR) for a two-bedroom apartment is $1,341. In order to afford this level of rent and utilities – without paying more than 30% of income on housing – a household must earn $4,469 monthly or $53,627 annually. Assuming a 40-hour work week, 52 weeks per year, this level of income translates into a Housing Wage of $25.78.

Link to California Statistics: http://nlihc.org/oor/2013/CA

Link to full report~ Out of Reach, 2013: http://nlihc.org/oor/2013

HCD Web News – March 8, 2013

HCD Web News is an electronic clipping service which features stories related to California and national housing and community development related issues. HCD staff compiles current news sources on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.


March 8, 2013



MODESTO BEE: Low-income housing projects in Turlock and Modesto taking names

By Marijke Rowland // The first wait list has been set and leasing should begin shortly for the new affordable housing complex Avena Bella in Turlock as construction continues on a similar complex in Modesto. Since its leasing office opened in October, developer EAH Housing’s 80-unit Turlock project has had more than 650 people sign the interest list for apartments. A lottery was held Thursday to create the wait list as the leasing process moves forward.

CONCENTRATE MEDIA: Affordable Housing: What Ann Arbor can learn from Santa Cruz, CA

By Natalie Burg [3/6/13] // In the early 2000s, the city of Santa Cruz, California had a problem. The naturally beautiful, progressive city, home of a premier research university, had become such a desirable place to live that housing prices skyrocketed beyond the reach of many… What a study identified was that though ADUs were legal in Santa Cruz, they weren’t necessarily easy to develop for homeowners – legally, anyway. Continue reading

HCD Web News – February 22, 2013

HCD Web News is an electronic clipping service which features stories related to California and national housing and community development related issues. HCD staff compiles current news sources on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.


February 22, 2013



SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE: Bill’s $75 fee would add affordable housing

By Carolyn Said // Money for affordable housing in California has been slashed even as rising rents and dwindling incomes make the need more acute, advocates say.

SAN DIEGO-UNION TRIBUNE: Del Mar and fairgrounds may tackle housing together

By Lindsay Winkley [2/20/13] // DEL MAR — The city of Del Mar may be one step closer to solving its affordable housing woes, with city officials saying this week that they are working with the Del Mar Fairgrounds on a proposal that could potentially benefit both agencies. Council members passed a resolution, 4 to 1, committing to work together with the Fairboard to create affordable housing units as part of the fairgrounds’ upcoming master plan renovations… Continue reading