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LA Rents: County Faces Shortfall of 490,340 Affordable Homes, Most in State

Los Angeles County is facing the largest shortfall of affordable housing in California – 490,340 homes – according to a new report from the California Housing Partnership Corporation, which says L.A. County is home to seven of the 10 ZIP codes with the worst housing overcrowding in the nation and 64 ZIP codes that are in the worst half percent for housing overcrowding.

And it gets worse. The report also points out the doubly whammy affordability problem KPCC reported on in April: Median rents in Los Angeles County increased by 25 percent between 2000 and 2012, while the median income declined by 9 percent. Making the situation worse: State and federal funding for affordable funding has fallen by half a billion dollars during the last six years in L.A. County.

More than 143,000 new renter households have entered the Los Angeles market since 2006, many because of displacement during the foreclosure crisis, according to the report.

So what can turn things around? Here are the partnership’s three recommendations for local solutions:

  1. Replace lost redevelopment funds by dedicating to affordable housing a significant percentage of the hundreds of millions of dollars in recaptured annual property tax revenue that now go to the county.
  2. Expand the supply of permanent supportive housing for homeless individuals, families and youth by a) implementing “Pay-for-Success” financing for supportive housing and b) providing the homes and services called for by the United Way’s Home for Good plan to end chronic and veteran homelessness in L.A. County by 2016.
  3. Ensure that the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transit Authority adopts policies that encourage affordable development on LACTMA-owned land so that the most likely transit riders have access to transit and that environmental goals are realized.