In California, state housing officials this week announced $211 million in awards to help provide housing for more than 11,000 families in 42 counties.
The awards, part of a $2.1 billion housing bond approved by voters in 2002, include $129.9 million for low-interest loans for the construction of new affordable apartment homes and rehabilitation of existing affordable units; $23.1 million for down-payment assistance loans to low- and moderate-income first-time buyers of 769 homes in cities and counties that have reduced regulatory barriers to affordable housing; and $23 million for a Workforce Housing Reward Program that provides incentives to cities and counties for issuance of building permits for 6,894 new homes affordable to lower-income households.
Housing affordability continues to be a problem in California, with the median price of an existing home in the state at $564,430 in May, up 8 percent from a year ago, according to the California Association of Realtors.
The real estate trade group also produces an affordability index, which measures the percentage of households that can afford to purchase a median-priced home in California. The percentage of households in California able to afford a median-priced home stood at 14 percent in December, compared with 19 percent for the same period the prior year, according to the latest statistics available at C.A.R.’s Web site.