An affordable home is one where the resident uses no more than 30 percent of their income to pay for their housing costs and still meet their other expenses. Residents who live in a home that is affordable have funds to meet their essential needs such as food, health care, education and other living needs. Affordable homes mean that residents also have the ability to purchase goods and services in their communities, creating and supporting community economic stability.
Inability to pay the rent or mortgage often leads to eviction, foreclosure, and even the experience of homelessness. Loss or disruption in housing can also mean disruption in a family’s ability to go to work and children’s ability to be prepared for school. Those who can’t afford their housing can be forced to live in overcrowded or substandard homes. Residents lack privacy, a place to do homework, an adequate place to sleep, and more. Unsafe homes expose children and families to lead paint, mold and other allergens, and are often located in under-resourced and unsafe neighborhoods.
Connecticut’s housing landscape mirrors the historical inequalities and racism ingrained in America’s housing system. Housing policies have restricted certain families from renting or owning homes in thriving neighborhoods, denying them access to quality education, healthcare, and the ability to pass on generational wealth. Thousands of Connecticut families are confined to unstable and often unsafe housing situations and neighborhoods, with limited pathways to economic advancement and stability. We believe that a reimagined housing system can mitigate these injustices and build a more just and equitable future.