Features, Finance, Health and Safety, Law and Politics, Municipal Government, New York

NYC Housing Plan Leaves Behind Lowest-Income Households

February 4, 2020

By Stephanie West

New York, NY – The ‘affordable’ housing created by the City’s Housing New York plan is too expensive for at least 435,000 of the city’s lowest-income households. 

New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stringer has released an analysis of the City’s plan that indicates only one-third of the newly-constructed housing units through the end of FY 2019 were within the reach of extremely low and very low- income households. This includes household Income up to $48,050 for a family of three.  As New York City’s homelessness crisis grows, Comptroller Stringer called on the City to direct all housing capital investment to benefit the households most affected by the crisis of housing affordability.

“We cannot call a housing plan ‘affordable’ when it ignores 435,000 New Yorkers who are just a paycheck away from losing their homes,” said Comptroller Stringer. “We cannot call the City’s plan a ‘housing’ plan when it leaves behind homeless and unsheltered New Yorkers.  New York City is battling a full-blown affordability crisis, and the time for half-measures is long-past. We must create housing that actually meets families where they are – housing that is truly affordable and refocuses City resources where our affordability crisis is most acute. The price of entry to New York City cannot be a million-dollar condo.”

In November 2018, Comptroller Stringer released a detailed, data-driven analysis of New York City’s affordability crisis and housing need. The report, NYC for All: The Housing We Need, proposed new strategies for building targeted, truly affordable housing for those most at risk.

Comptroller Stringer’s updated analysis found:

  • Nearly 565,000 New York households pay over half of their income for rent, are severely overcrowded, or have been in a homeless shelter for over a year.
  • The current housing plan leaves 435,000 of the lowest income New Yorkers living a paycheck away from homelessness.
  • Just one-third of the Mayor’s Housing New York plan New Construction units through the end of FY 2019 were for extremely and very low-income households.
  • Sixty-five percent of extremely low-income households are severely rent-burdened (i.e., pay more than half their monthly income toward rent) and nearly one-third of very low-income households are severely rent-burdened.
  • While housing production through the City’s Housing New York Plan in Fiscal Year 2019 provided more units for low-income households than in previous years, overall, production remains skewed toward low-income households making $76,880 for a family of three, while housing for very low-income and extremely low-income households was achieved primarily through preservation.
February 4, 2020

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