Portland housing report documents woes, gains

person Viola Charlesfolder_openHomeaccess_time May 2, 2018

PORTLAND, Ore. (PORTLAND TRIBUNE) — Average Black, Latino, Native American and single mother households cannot afford to live anywhere in Portland, according to the annual State of Housing report the City Council is scheduled to accept on Thursday.

The report, submitted by the Portland Housing Bureau, also found the Black population in Portland declined between 2000 and 2015, even though 83,000 people moved to the city.

And the report found that 4.2 percent of the population was homeless in 2017, with nearly 50 percent of the unsheltered population in downtown, Old Town and Southeast Portland.

In addition, according to the report, "A homebuyer looking to buy a home below $300,000 would only have six neighborhoods to search in, four of which are located in East Portland. Increases in home prices and rents in many East Portland neighborhoods continue to raise serious concerns over potential involuntary economic displacement, as well as housing access and stability."

Despite such bad news, the report also found that the rate of rate increases slowed in 2017 and 4,419 units of new housing were created, mostly in apartments. The city more than doubled the amount of affordable units it created last year, and 700 additional ones are currently under construction.

"Housing production and permitting levels in the private market are higher than any point in the last 15 years — yet rents in too many of our great neighborhoods remain out of reach for a Portland family making the median income. While the steep rent increases of the last several years began to soften in 2017, Portland families are still increasingly burdened by rising rents in larger-size housing units. Disparities in income and access to both homes to rent and homeownership persist for our communities of color," Mayor Ted Wheeler says in his foreward to the report.

The council is scheduled to accept the report at 2 p.m. on May 3.

The Portland Tribune is a KOIN media partner.

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