Thursday, September 13, 2007

Half of San Diego County households live in unaffordable housing

That's the headline from a new issue brief from the Center on Policy Initiatives here in San Diego. A study of 2006 Census data released this week discovered that "about 53% of both renters and homebuyers in this county can't afford their housing, according to federal standards." Those numbers according to CPI add up to more than 500,000 households countywide.

Perhaps coincidentally, FoxNews last night ran a story aimed at revealing the "human side" of the foreclosure crisis throughout the county. The story ultimately focused on analysing all the mistakes people make on the way to foreclosure, conveniently blaming those who end up losing in all of this rather than getting particularly ruffled about predatory lending practices or subprime mortgages that have disproportionately hit Latinos and African-Americans with foreclosure (also touched on in the CPI report among other places).

More than half. That's not an ingredient for economic growth, improved test scores, higher health standards, public safety, or anything else generally considered desirable for a community. The San Diego housing market is already in decline, with dozens if not hundreds of condos sitting vacant and unsold. Where exactly is this county going and why are we in this handbasket?

Cross posted at Calitics

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