There is lots of talk these days about the need for more affordable housing in the Southern California region. It is important to recognize the difference between “low-income” housing and “affordable” housing.
Low-income housing is subsidized by the government. There are several projects throughout the region that are monitored by local government housing authorities. An on-line search or call to the regional housing authorities will provide a list of available low-income housing rental projects. Some projects are for veterans, seniors and others for all-ages. There are also low-income for-sale housing projects sponsored by housing authorities and by organizations like Habitat for Humanity.
In these low-income housing developments, renters or home buyers must meet strict income guidelines. Only low-income can qualify to live in these developments. The income is determined by the income of the entire family and includes funds in the bank and investments.
Affordable housing, on the other hand, is not limited to low-income renters or purchasers. There is no limit to the amount of income a person or family has. It is their choice to live in the available affordable housing. Apartments, condominiums, and mobile home parks/manufactured housing communities are considered affordable housing stock in the various individual jurisdictions housing elements. Continue reading
Last year Californians weathered the driest year on record and the drought conditions are continuing. Orange County has done an amazing job in the last decade at conserving our states water supply. Our population has continued to grow but our water consumption has not grown at an equal rate. This shows our determination for stewardship. Here are some helpful tips to keep up the good work.
- Install water conserving hardware i.e. aerators in your faucets, high-pressure showers and ultra low flush toilets. These improvements can save 70,000 gallons of water a year per household. This reflects a yearly savings on your water bill of around $200.
- Water your lawn early in the morning or late at night to avoid evaporation.
- Install drip irrigation for trees, shrubs and flower beds.
- Integrate native plants into your landscaping; many of them need less water.
- Reduce your shower time by 5 minutes & turn off the water while brushing your teeth.
- Only wash full loads of laundry and/or dishes
- Fill the sink to rinse dishes rather than running the water.
- Install an instant water heater on sinks and showers far from the main water heater. This keeps you from running the water while waiting for it to get hot.
- Wash your car with a bucket of water rather than leaving the hose running.
- Sweep your driveway with a broom rather than hosing it off.
For more tips on how to conserve water visit www.wateraware.org
The Federal government offers various housing assistance programs to help individuals and families find affordable housing. The Section 8 program, also known as Housing Choice Voucher program, is one such program that provides rent assistance to qualified renters.
The requirement to qualify is straight-forward and is determined by your local Public Housing Authority. In general, it depends on your total annual income, size of your family and how long you’ve been living in the United States.
You can apply for Section 8 vouchers at any Public Housing Authority office in any county or city in your state of residence.
Make sure to check with Park Management to see if they accept Section 8 vouchers in your park. This program can help you if you are struggling to make ends meet. To apply online click here.