Contributing Monkie G Monkie
Published on January 24, 2009
These days you can’t turn on a TV, open a paper or hit a news site without seeing something about the housing crisis and the banks going belly up. It all sounds so bad, most of us feel like closing our curtains and hope this crisis doesn’t come our way. That might work for Paris Hilton, but for the people who where already on the edge, this crisis is rolling right over them.
Los Angeles and California are in the middle of their own budget crisis and all those people relying some kind of assistance are in real trouble.
Here are some numbers from L.A. Weekly:
- Minus 78 percent (yes, -78%): That’s the latest massive drop in the city’s Affordable Housing Trust Fund, slashed from $45 million in last year’s city budget to just $10 million this year.
- 49: That’s L.A.’s bottom-of-the-barrel “housing affordability” rank out of 50 big American cities, with San Francisco ranked last, according to a 2008 survey by San Francisco nonprofit SustainLane.com.
- $962: Last year’s average cost of renting in Los Angeles, 43 percent higher than in 2000.
- 10,000 to 14,000: The dwellings built in each year of L.A.’s just-ended boom, mostly in dense, multistory, “luxury” complexes.
- 330: The number of “affordable units” constructed each year, on average, during the same period, from 2003 to 2006.
- 7,369: The number of affordable units lost during the same period, mostly through conversions to luxury units but also demolitions related to new housing.
- 13,713: The net number of rent-controlled apartments and houses lost between 2001 and 2007 to demolition sparked by new construction and, even more often, to condo conversions sparked by the housing bubble’s rush to home ownership.
“If the city’s numbers are accurate, Los Angeles has been losing a massive supply of affordable housing, while city leaders repeatedly take credit for approving 10,000 to 14,000 new units during each boom year one of the busiest construction periods since the end of World War II. In the face of widespread – neighborhood resistance to this most recent boom, city planners approved often-sprawling luxury complexes in Hollywood, along Wilshire, on the Westside, in the Valley and downtown — while the city was hemorrhaging its existing cheap rental stock.
City Controller Laura Chick says 90 percent of the units built during the construction frenzy were for those earning at least $135,000.”
Read the full article by Max Taves at laweekly.com