Since 2012, housing prices in King County have increased by nearly 120 percent. The cost of living has spiked across our region, leaving many workers and families with limited access to affordable housing.
The expensive Seattle-area housing market has placed mounting pressure on communities further north as more workers are getting priced out of the market. These forces are driving up housing costs throughout the 1st Congressional District, leaving some families with the choice of long, costly commutes or housing costs that consume most of their income. Homelessness and housing insecurity remain a fact of life in our region and we must address this crisis.
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, over 11 million households across the country were already paying more than half of their income in rent, a number that continues to rise. That’s why I introduced the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act, which would strengthen the low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) and create an estimated 400,000 more affordable housing units over the next 10 years. Since its enactment in 1986, LIHTC has encouraged private sector development of more than 3 million affordable housing units for low-income individuals and families.
Without access to affordable housing, many people are at significant risk of homelessness. Research also shows that homelessness disproportionately impacts veterans. With more than 40,000 veterans in the 1st District, we need to give veterans the ability to have a safe and affordable place to call home.
I am committed to fighting to ensure that every American has access to affordable, safe, and stable housing. Housing challenges impact everyone—local businesses trying to hire and retain a qualified workforce, our hardworking families and young Americans with hopes of starting a family, and seniors who have worked their whole lives to retire with dignity.
If we want to promote prosperity in our state and nation, we must put all ideas on the table. I will fight to make sure that we enact policies that ensure no American is left behind when it comes to having a place to call home