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If You Don't Build It They Will Come Anyway: Why Fast-Growing Regions Need an Affordable Housing Strategy Robert E. Lang, Ph.D. Director and Associate.

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Presentation on theme: "If You Don't Build It They Will Come Anyway: Why Fast-Growing Regions Need an Affordable Housing Strategy Robert E. Lang, Ph.D. Director and Associate."— Presentation transcript:

1 If You Don't Build It They Will Come Anyway: Why Fast-Growing Regions Need an Affordable Housing Strategy Robert E. Lang, Ph.D. Director and Associate Professor Metropolitan Institute at Virginia Tech Affordable Housing in the Upstate Greenville, SC – September 16, 2003

2 What the Talk Covers Recent academic findings on the link between Smart Growth and Affordable Housing. Twenty-year trends in housing production at the national and regional level. Twenty year trends in house price appreciation at the regional and metropolitan level. What this all means for Upstate South Carolina.

3 Findings From HUD/Brookings Affordable Housing and Smart Growth Conference. There is nothing inherent in growth management that limits housing supply and drives up housing costs. That is true; however, of “Stop Growth” and “exclusionary” regulation, or even land preservation in the absence of “upzoning.” Portland’s growth management did not drive up home prices—even economist Bill Fischel agrees. Multifamily rental housing does not impact the house prices of nearby single family homes.

4 National and Regional Housing Production: US Housing production slowed in the 1990s despite a big jump in population. The South leads the nation in total housing construction during the 1990s. The South outpaces the nation in the 1990s in single-family home construction. Production of single-family homes falls off dramatically during the 1990s in the Northeast and California. Multifamily permitting falls off everywhere in the nation in the 1990s, especially in California.

5 Table 1. Housing Construction Permits , total permits From Myers and Park, The Great Housing Collapse in California, 2002.

6 Table 2. Housing Construction Permits , single-family permits From Myers and Park, The Great Housing Collapse in California, 2002.

7 Table 3. Housing Construction Permits , multifamily permits From Myers and Park, The Great Housing Collapse in California, 2002.

8 Why the Housing Slowdown? Politics of Growth Management. Perception of draining municipal budgets. Proposition 13-type local laws. Loss of multifamily tax shelter. Tax law of 2003 on dividend income.

9 House Price Appreciation: Biggest increases in Northeast and California and the West—especially New England and the Bay Area. More modest gains in the Midwest and South. Greenville grows moderately for nation, but relatively strong for the South. Charleston currently has the most expensive housing in the state and it gaining cost the fastest.

10 Map 1. Change in Median Price of Single Family Homes,

11 Table 4. Median Existing Single-Family Home Price (Seasonally Adjusted) Source: Economy.com; National Association of Realtors

12 What this all Means for the Upstate Pair land preservation with housing production. Lower regulatory barriers in areas targeted for growth. Construct sufficient multifamily housing for a growing population. Better preserve the affordable housing that currently exists because new stock is going up slower. Remember—if you don’t build it, they will come anyway.

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