On June 3, Emil Picchi asked via LTE who benefits from more housing. It benefits all of us, especially our most vulnerable and essential workers. According to the County’s Let’s Talk Housing website:
• “1 in 4 renters liv[es] in overcrowded housing — more than one occupant per room ... 89% are people of color.”
• “1 in 4 renters spend more than 50% of their income on rent.”
• A hair stylist making $20 an hour would be spending 62% of their income on rent
• A medical assistant or preschool teacher making $27 an hour would be spending 45% of their income on rent.
More housing benefits our entire community by:
• Enabling our “teachers, firefighters, health care workers, essential workers [to] find homes … ;”
• Enabling our “young adults [to move] out of their childhood home and…stay in the cities they grew up in;” and
• Providing our local businesses with more customers.
Buildings like duplexes, cottage clusters, and low-rise apartments are also a less resource-intensive way to house workers already here, and are more water-friendly. Half of urban water use is landscaping, and total urban water use has been declining in California despite a growing population. According to the Public Policy Institute of California, per capita urban water use fell from 231 gallons per day in 1990 to 146 in 2015.
More information is available at letstalkhousing.org and https://www.ppic.org/publication/water-use-in-california/