ATLANTA – HouseATL’s members have developed 23 recommendations as a call to action for the five-county core Atlanta area on housing affordability.
HouseATL Board directors approved the 23 recommendations after a highly collaborative process across numerous meetings, surveys and feedback sessions, with more than 200 people weighing in over nine months. The recommendations update the initial call-to-action that was issued by HouseATL in 2018 to reflect the changing market. Data from the Urban Land Institute shows that since 2018, Atlanta’s five core counties have grown by 9%, but the number of affordable cost-burdened households outpaced household growth by 15%. As Board Co-Chair Margaret Stagmeier, partner in TriStar Real Estate Investments, shared, “Amid the changing housing landscape with rising home prices, high mortgage rates and population growth, these recommendations offer positive actions that can be taken across sectors by developers, policymakers, civic leaders, nonprofit service providers, community members and funders.”
The recommendations were selected based on impact potential, interest and feasibility. Collectively, the 23 recommendations work to support homebuyers, preserve homeownership, increase and coordinate capital, align and mobilize public resources, support residents under 50% Area Median Income (AMI), preserve multifamily housing, support community retention, and ensure that affordable housing is resilient.
Board Co-Chair Janis Ware, SUMMECH CDC’s executive director, emphasized, “Increasing housing affordability requires coordinated action across sectors. We are proud to be a cross-sector convenor. Our new strategic recommendations will foster collective action on regional housing affordability.” The recommendations can be found here.
HouseATL Executive Director Natallie Keiser expressed, “These new recommendations will guide HouseATL and our 378 coalition members over the next three years in implementing actions and policies to support affordable housing with key measures to track our progress. Our immediate next step is advancing a policy agenda for the upcoming state legislative session.”
HouseATL’s members voted to prioritize the following six recommendations, which will be the focus of HouseATL’s next steps:
● Dedicating revenue sources for affordable housing development
● Enhancing and protecting renters‘ rights
● Creating sustainable funding sources for housing under 50% Area Median Income (AMI)
● Prioritizing publicly owned assets for affordable housing
● Providing resources to encourage affordable/starter homes by homebuilders
● Securing property tax exemptions for affordable rental housing
At HouseATL’s next member convening on November 29th, there will be a presentation on the state policy agenda and a panel focused on implementation of the recommendations related to housing for households below 50% of the Area Median Income.
HouseATL is a cross-sector membership coalition of civic leaders committed to building the public will for a comprehensive and coordinated housing affordability action plan for Atlanta. HouseATL’s vision is that Atlanta will have a shared, comprehensive set of policies and adequate funding to address housing affordability. HouseATL was initiated in early 2018 through the convening power and resources of the Urban Land Institute of Atlanta, The Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation, Central Atlanta Progress, the Center for Civic Innovation and the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce. More than 200 civic leaders came together to develop a bold plan with 23 actionable recommendations for Atlanta to achieve 20,000 additional affordable housing units. Mayor Bottoms responded directly to these recommendations with her own One Atlanta Affordable Housing Plan. Since 2018, HouseATL’s constituents have continued to work together to define root causes of the affordable housing challenge, examine the data, look at best practices and engage in thoughtful problem-solving to make concrete recommendations on a path forward. In late 2021, HouseATL’s leadership moved to formalize under the fiscal and operational sponsorship of the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta.