02.29.16
Maury County Housing Council Housing Summit

Where can I find an affordable place to stay in Maury County? This question is being asked by more and more people who are searching for a place to live, but increasingly there are no places available for them in Maury County. Of course, the more money that you have the more options you have to find a place to live for you and your family. However, there are still too many people searching for a quality, affordable, and safe place to live in Maury County. Many people in Maury County spend a significant portion of their income on housing, which leaves less for other essentials such as food, medicine, clothing, and transportation.

According to a September 2015 research report by Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies and Enterprise Community Partners, 11.8 million households spend more than 50 percent of their income on rent, and that number is expected to increase to 13.1 million by 2025. By the federal government’s definition, housing is affordable if it costs less than 30 percent of a family’s income.

The Harvard University report also points out that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), states that the “need for affordable housing is already overwhelming the capacity of federal, state and local governments to supply assistance and meet the demand. At last measure, 11.2 million extremely low-income households competed for 7.3 million homes affordable to them — a 3.9 million home shortfall, and just over a quarter of eligible very low-income households received rental assistance, leaving 7.7 million unassisted very low-income renters with worst case housing needs in 2013.” By HUD’s definition, low-income limits are set at 80 percent of the median income for a given area, and very low-income limits are set at 50 percent of the median income. The 2015 area median family income in Maury County is $53,600. This means that a family is considered low income if their income is less than $42,900. By contrast, a very low-income family receives an income less than $26,800. There are still so many people in our community who don’t have any money left to live on after paying their rent and utilities each month. So, we must focus on providing a variety of affordable housing options in Maury County to accommodate families at all levels of the income ladder. It is important to remember that a strong economy with a variety of jobs must have affordable housing available for the people who work on those jobs.

Let’s have a discussion about how to address this issue and discover practical solutions to expand affordable housing options in Maury County. I want to personally invite local leaders, developers, elected officials, business owners, serviceagencies, and interested citizens to the Maury County Housing Summit on March 24th at Columbia State Community College Hickman Building-Room 123 from 9a.m.-12p.m. The keynote speaker for the event is Mr. Ralph Perrey, Tennessee Housing Development Agency Executive Director.

You can conveniently register online today at http://evite.me/Y4B7Mmvrfw

 

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