Tax reform might just save the American dream in Charlottesville
By Anand Colaco, Nathaniel Doty, Nadia Gallimore, Naad Kundu and Shea Miller Novello What is the state of the American dream when people can no longer afford the very home they own? For residents of many Charlottesville neighborhoods, gentrification and rising property values have dimmed the bright vision of homeownership. Charlottesville must expand its […]
Can redevelopment save Richmond’s Gilpin Court?
Pipes that repeatedly burst above her bed, old fridges that barely keep food cold and stoves with no child safety protections are just a few of the frustrations that Fredericka has faced throughout the course of the 13 years she has been a resident of Gilpin Court. Despite all of the problems, her toddler still […]
Land value taxes could cut homeowners’ costs. Why haven’t Virginia localities enacted them?
Republicans rarely encounter a tax cut they don’t like. But this year, a bill which could have lowered homeowners’ property taxes in one locality was killed on a party-line vote. HB 2112 from Del. Sally Hudson, D-Charlottesville would have enabled the city to become only the fifth locality in Virginia to progress from a reliance […]
Pocahontas Island’s next lifetime
Having devoted the latter part of his life to preserving Pocahontas Island in Petersburg, Richard A. Stewart, the island’s honorary mayor, is gone, dead at age 79. In the wake of the stalwart community historian’s death, though, the island lives on, primed for its second wind. As it did during his lifetime, Stewart’s presence looms […]
Arlington’s Missing Middle: False promise of affordability
By Anne Bodine for Arlingtonians for Our Sustainable Future In March 2023, Arlington County became the first jurisdiction in the Washington, D.C. area to abandon low density zoning, which enabled parts of Arlington to develop largely as single-family homes. Arlington’s newly-adopted Missing Middle Housing Plan allows six-plexes to be built on all but the smallest […]
Fighting over 348 units: What’s next for Arlington’s pro-housing push?
Supporters and opponents of the “missing middle” housing plan that Arlington’s County Board unanimously passed last month agree on little, save the fact that something died that night. While supporters celebrated the demise of “the Jim Crow relic of single-family zoning,” opponents waved signs that read “R.I.P. The Arlington Way” — a reference to the […]
Mortgage rates are stabilizing, but that may not be enough to help house hunters
Home prices are cooling off and mortgage rates fell last week, but the fallout from recent bank closures could continue to make it hard for some Americans to buy homes, economists say. Mortgage rates fell to 6.32% for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, Freddie Mac data released last Thursday shows. Last fall, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage […]
Can carriage houses and granny flats ease the housing crisis?
Whether carriage houses, in-law suites, English basements or granny flats, what all accessory dwelling units (ADUs) have in common – the reason their backers love them and why few folks think of them as a possible solution to the housing crisis – is that they blend in with the neighborhood. A bill patroned by Del. […]
Should Virginia build housing for public servants on public land?
Almost 60% of tenants in Virginia faced a rent increase last year. Localities are regulating starter homes out of existence. The rate of evictions is quickly returning to pre-pandemic levels. The statewide median home sales price broke $390,000 last spring. The commonwealth’s housing crisis can seem like something of an onion: each layer peels back […]
Why are Virginia counties regulating starter homes out of existence?
Five years ago, before the pandemic-driven demand for more space and the en masse entrance of millenials to the housing market, the median home sales price in the commonwealth sat at $290,000. Last year that figure hit $390,000 — a $100,000 jump over a period during which Virginians’ median household income actually shrank by $2,975, […]
Governor Glenn Youngkin, YIMBY-in-chief?
Republican Governor Glenn Youngkin and California Democrats could hardly be further apart politically; however, their diagnoses of what is wrong with America’s housing market sound uncannily similar: Excessive regulation has hindered new housing construction, driving up home prices to the point of hurting the broader economy. After a string of big legislative wins in Sacramento […]
4 takeaways on housing in light of Thursday’s inflation report
Housing costs, including rental prices, are on the path to stabilizing but evidence of this won’t show up in inflation measures anytime soon, economists say. The latest Consumer Price Index numbers, which are used to measure inflation, came out Thursday morning and showed a notable easing. But the survey used to measure shelter, a large component […]