May The (Work) Force Be With You, Posted By Ron

  1. Couldn’t agree more. It is very important to have our nations corner stones, the first responders, to have access to some kind of housing to make their job a little easier. You have my full support on this issue!

  2. I applaud your efforts Ron. I was asked to participate in our Town of Mt. Pleasant, SC (just over the bridge from Charleston SC) Workforce Housing Committee about 4.5 years ago.

    After almost 3 years, the committee’s efforts were recognized when Town Council passed the WFH ordinance plus the ADU (Accessory Dwelling Unit) ordinance. Both of these now allow folks to live the American Dream.

    The ADU allows a family to build a seperate living arrangement on to their house to bring their aging parent to live with them. Not everyone can afford assisted living facilites, etc. Plus Aging-in-Place is becoming the standard, as well.

    I am glad to say that my town has and had progressive insight and I will be forever grateful that I was asked to make a change in people’s lives.

  3. Scott Kelly

    I think NAR is once again showing its disconnect with the real pulse on the street. Had NAR really been in touch with the “workforce” that drives our emergency response they would most certainly have included verbage that includes any nonprofit organization. While I suppose firefighters and police officers as one of the most noble careers, people that work equally hard in crisis like 9/11, the war on drugs, school violence, etc are the nonprofit social service sector. A master level social worker makes less than 80% AMI in most markets though they are one of the most highly trained personnel. The NAR needs to recognize all people who have sacrificed a more financial rewarding, less emotionally taxing, and even safer career in order to pursue a career that makes a impact on all of society, not just the ones held on the narrowly formulated Republican platform. It’s time that the NAR recognize all citizens that sacrifice their lives to impact this world. Social workers, teachers, guidance counselors, vocational rehabilitation specialist, office managers of nonprofits, etc. Anyone making less than 50% AMI working in social service.

    the less recognized heros in our community.

  4. bill

    Content fine but one word: tripod

  5. Peter S. Subowicz

    After Katrina hit the Gulf Coast of La., Miss and Alabama, wiping out literally hundreds of thousands of dwelling units, a significant number of the local working class was forced to relocate to other areas of the country, many would love to return, but where is the affordable housing?
    Hundreds of Millions of Dollars of Bond Money was earmarked for those areas, I would truly love to know, how much of that money went unused. There are lots of statistics regarding that storm, would love to know just how many dwelling units have been rebuilt along the Gulf Coast, I’m just guessing here, but I’m pretty certain as a percentage of the homes lost, it’s a very small number.
    Interesting how there was money to rebuild the Casinos, but very little to rebuild homes that were lost.

  6. Rusty Barnes

    California has a “Work Force Housing” program which is nothing more than mandated government subsidized apartments. In some areas, like the San Francisco Bay Area, maybe it’s needed or there would not be sufficient and affordable housing for lower income workers.

    The problem is, Government consistantly lays down rules and mandates based on selective needs in one area of the population. Our small City and surrounding area in a 5-mile radius has an abondance of low cost rentals. But the Government does not recognize individual area needs and demands we built apartments with tax payers money to compete with the tax payer trying to keep his/her property rented.

    NAR is going the wrong way! For my membership, I want NAR to fight against any further intrusion into the private property realm.

    Respectfully Submtted,

    Russell C. (Rusty) Barnes
    Broker – Associate
    Big Bear Lake, CA

  7. We fought this in Idaho. If you want people to live in your community who are fire fighters and police and so forth, pay them more. When you set up a community of workforce housing, it keeps the wages down and validates the low wages to these people. Bad, Bad, Bad. Let the free market work. That is how people get ahead when the demand forces higher wages. Pay people what you feel they are worth and they will buy higher priced homes. If you don’t pay them properly they will move elsewhere. What is of value to the rich? If they want fire and police protection, they should be willing to pay for it. How about the farm workers? Anybody looking out for them so they can live in these types of neighborhoods? No! People might rethink things if they didn’t have food to put on their tables. Get priorities right. Everyone deserves to make a healthy living. Not just doctors and attorneys. You have to let the free market work!

  8. Claire Forcier-Rowe

    I couldn’t agree more, these everyday hero’s are often times forgotten.

  9. Susan Phillips

    I just returned from the Workshop Housing Conference. I found it to be an incredibly valuable experience. The conference itself was very well organized with excellent speakers. The NAR Workforce Housing Class this morning provided lots of practical strategies and resources to help me implement an action plan to develop programs and contact companies in my area.

  10. Ron,
    Thanks for bringing up this priority in the big picture that you represent. Here in Denver we have an inclusionary housing ordinance that is really struggling. A couple of thoughts as you press forward. Our workforce housing guidelines use HUD guidelines and an 80% Area Median Income number. This number is usually slightly too low to encompass the work force that you are talking about. Unless you are a first year teacher, a police or fireman in the academy and don’t have too much tenure with the city you make too much to qualify and not enough to buy a market rate house. Also there are a lot of struggles with getting builders on board and have always suffered with PR for the program especially with Realtors.(perception of Section 8 etc.)
    Thanks for taking it on and let me know if I can get you any other” boots on the ground” anecdotes or help.
    Damon Knop

  11. Betsy Gates

    Dear Mr. Phipps,
    Having been in real-estate for more years than I care to remember, I have to take exception with this
    Work Force agenda. My husband was a police officer for 30 yrs in Bergen County NJ.
    We struggled to get a home and pay and raise our family, and his retirement was nothing compared to what they get today. In our golden years we moved to south jersey ( and if you think they are not paid enough try the stats on what these officers make in our town.) I have a neighbor who is getting 120k a year and full benefits for his wife and 3 children. He is in his early 50’s/ It was his choice to get out. I have no idea what the first responders make but I do know / we have a multitude of other people that need help that do not have lucrative pensions and benefits, mainly the seniors and struggling workers who have all they can do to keep a roof over their heads and food on the table and they are no getting police perks. Yes I am still working because I as a realtor cannot afford to retire. Not in NJ.

  12. This is great, Ron… I wonder if this could be made possible here in FL