​Broward's investment in affordable housing pays off

Sun-Sentinel, December 5, 2023, 

The Broward County Commission is making a tremendous positive impact on the lives of Broward residents and our local economy by their state-leading investment in addressing the housing affordability crisis.​

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Broward County's HPA Program Provides Help for Homebuyers

6 South Florida, March 17, 2023, Yaima Crespo

The Homebuyer Purchase Assistance Program offers up to $80,000 in assistance, helping potential buyers find a home amid a difficult housing market.

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​New Broward homeless shelter is a no-go as the county faces a housing crisis

South Florida Sun Sentinel, February 25, 2023, Spencer Norris

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Help Bring the Homeless Back Home

Broward County is looking for landlords with vacant units to helpgive the homeless a second chance. Project Home Again guarantees you on-time rent plus security. Candidates are prescreened and case managers partner with you every step of the way. Listings are confidential and only authorized case managers can access them​. It's easy to sign up. Register for free at ProjectHomeAgain.com​​​

More housing is coming to South Florida

New developments in the works include workforce housing in Boynton, senior housing from the Archdiocese of Miami

South Florida Sun Sentinel, July 14, 2022, Amber Randall

Housing in South Florida is famously scarce right now, especially new builds. But despite supply chain issues delaying projects and lack of available land upon which to build, new projects are making headway. Here, some of the some projects in the work:

Workforce housing headed to Boynton Beach.  An eight-story mixed-used development is coming to Boynton Beach next year, with apartments, office and retail space.

Housing for seniors in Pompano Beach.  The Archdiocese of Miami is looking to add more affordable housing units at a senior living complex it owns in Pompano Beach.

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​Progra​m targets housing shortage United Way initiative bringing affo​rdable units to Broward

South Florida Sun Sentinel, June 28, 2022, Amber Randall

As the housing crisis worsens in South Florida, a new housing program is working to bring affordable units to residents.

United Way of Broward County, a social services non-profit, launched Housing United, a funding initiative geared towards helping finance affordable housing projects throughout Broward County.

The program’s goal is to bring 2,500 affordable units to the county over the next five years by teaming with various local organizations and banks, and using federal funds to raise money to help pay for these developments.

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​Study ​reveals 8% of households can afford a single-family home in Br​oward County

South Florida Sun Sentinel, June 22, 2022, Amber Randall

Based on spending the recommended 30% of income on housing, a home at the median sale price for Broward County, around $545,000, is far out of reach for almost all residents in South Florida, according to a preliminary assessment from researchers at Florida International University. Experts involved are concerned about the effects on the regions economy, particularly for workers in the hospitality and service sectors.

“It’s just become so excessive, really, it’s almost paralyzed the housing market for anyone who actually lives and works in Broward County,” said Dr. Edward Murray, associate director of the Metropolitan Center at Florida International University and author of the study. “Local residents have been completely removed from the market, certainly from a purchasing standpoint.”

Broward’s median sale price is almost nine times the median salary in South Florida, according to Murray. In a normal market, the ratio should be 3:1.

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​​​Browa​rd County Commis​​sion awards $1 million loan to the Southeast Florida Community Development Fund, Inc., to expand affordable housing program for first-time homebuyers in Broward County.

Press Release, June 21, 2022, SFRPC

On June 7, 2022 the Broward County Commissioner approved an additional $1,000,000 line of credit to the Southeast Florida Community Development Fund, Inc. (SFCDFI), a 501(c)3 managed by the South Florida Regional Planning Council, to fund affordable housing for first-time homebuyers in Broward County. This is in addition to the existing $1,000,000 revolving line of credit which was approved by the Housing Finance Authority (HFA) of Broward County in late 2019.

Full Press Release...

​​Broward C​ounty home to severe housing affordability woes. Who's making big push to tackle the problem?

The Miami Herald, June 17, 2022, Michael Butler

Broward County ranks dead last in Florida with only 25 affordable homes for every 100 families.

The county's most cost-burdened residents — two-thirds of whom are people of color — are spending more than half their monthly incomes on housing expenses. The rule of thumb, according to personal finance experts, is to spend no more than 30% of monthly earnings on housing-related costs.

Only a meager 8% of Broward residents can reasonably expect to attain homeownership, according to a recent study of the county's housing needs by Ned Murray, Florida International University's associate director of the Jorge M. Pérez Metropolitan Center.

With that in mind, United Way of Broward County just launched Housing United, a five-year strategic program to bring together the public and private sectors to tackle the county's most pressing need: building homes struggling working residents can afford to rent or buy.

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​​​​Br​oward planning ne​​​w rental apartments for low-income families

South Florida Sun Sentinel, March 1, 2022, Lisa J. Huriash

More than 1,000 new apartments will be built across Broward to help low-income families — with rents expected to range from $700 to $1,850 a month.

The county will help subsidize the developments because otherwise they may never be built. County officials say without the financial help, housing only could become harder to find. The situation is “getting worse by the day,” said Ralph Stone, the county’s director of the Housing Finance Division.

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​​Lauderdale Lakes​ celebrates c​ompletion of homes — more than a decade in the making

South Florida Sun Sentinel, November 14, 2021, Lisa J. Huriash

Lauderdale Lakes’ largest planned community was supposed to be finished a long time ago: back in 2009. More than a decade later, the homes are finally all done — perfect timing to meet the high demand for new housing.

Bella Vista is now a sprawling community of 541 homes, retail space and a library, situated along Oakland Park Boulevard, just east of State Road 7. The massive development is considered a crowning achievement for the city, flinging open the remaining doors to its rental apartments.

There are 317 rental apartments, and 132 villas and 92 townhomes for purchase.  The commercial space, 2,000 square feet, is ready to start leasing to tenants.

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​Affordable apartments fo​​r seniors unveiled in Flagler Village as housing crisis worsens

South Florida Sun Sentinel, November 3, 2021, Amber Randall

A developer celebrated the opening of 100 affordable apartments for seniors in Flagler Village Tuesday morning, offering some market relief as rents continue to rise in South Florida.

The apartment complex, Village View, caters to seniors and comes at a time when South Florida renters are struggling to find affordable places to live.

Located on Andrews Avenue, the building is already fully leased, which is an indication as to how serious the housing crisis has become in South Florida, according to Matthew Rieger, CEO and president of Housing Trust Group, the developer of the building.

The units are available for families where one person is 55 years or older, with apartments from one to two bedrooms ranging from 700 square feet to more than 1,100 square feet. The complex also has a swimming pool, a fitness center and parking garage. Rents are set at a more affordable range, from $402 to $1,296 per month, with spaces reserved for seniors who earn at or below 30, 60 and 70 percent of the area median income.

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​United Way of Broward ​County to Launch New Affordable Housing Initiative

Lifestyle Media Group, September 13, 2021, Staff

Aiming to reduce the housing gap in Broward County, the United Way of Broward County tapped two business leaders to develop the programming and stainability strategy for its new Affordable Housing Initiative. Marcia Barry-Smith, President of MBS Consulting Services, will oversee the plan, while Heidi Alzate Kaufman, president of Heidi Alzate Consulting, will lead the fundraising campaign.

The initiative was created after the nonprofit organization identified affordable housing as the South Florida community’s biggest challenge. Its 2020 ALICE report indicated that 257,000 Broward County households (66 percent are people of color) are Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed (ALICE), with these working families one crisis away from not being able to make rent payments. 

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​​​Habitat Broward and FIU Partner to Study Homeownership Impact

Newsletter, April 13, 2021, Habitat Broward

Habitat Broward has partnered with Florida International University to conduct Broward’s first ever homeownership impact study. 

​Researchers at the Jorge Pérez Metropolitan Center at FIU will conduct the study that will examine quality of life, educational, health, and economic impacts of homeownership on Broward families. The study will also undertake extensive geo-coding to assess the effect homeownership has on wider community livability.

Newsletter...​   |   Habitat News Release...​

​C​​ommissioners Approve Plans to Increase Affordable Housing in Broward County

Press Release, March 12, 2021, Broward County Commission

BROWARD COUNTY, FL –Commissioners have approved legislation designed to increase the number of affordable housing developments in Broward County. 

After extensive collaboration with local governments and the development community, Commissioners approved new policies included in BrowardNext – Broward County Land Use Plan to promote and increase Transit Oriented Development and housing opportunities along major transportation corridors and also increase the number of affordable housing units available for residential development.

Press release...​​​​

​Broward County Board of County Commissioners

Proposed Land Use Plan Amendments (re: Affordable Housing Policies)

On November 5, 2019, the Broward County Board of County Commissioners (Board) voted on four (4) motions to initiate amendments to Land Use Plan (LUP) policies and transmit them to the Broward County Planning Council for consideration.

  • PCT 20-3 Bonus Density Text Amendment proposes to amend Policy 2.16.3 to increase the “market rate” formula for affordable housing units restricted for a period of 30 years.
  • PCT 20-4 Commerce and AC Text Amendment proposes to add Policy 2.16.4 to allow additional permitted residential density on parcels designated "Commerce" or "Activity Center" on the Broward County Land Use Plan and adjacent to a roadway classified as a State road or County arterial, subject to inclusion of an affordable housing component.
  • PCT 20-5 2.16.2 Methodology Text Amendment proposes to amend Policy 2.16.2 to require that local governments address affordable housing supply and programs in the “moderate,” “low” and “very-low” income categories and requires local governments to use the “Broward County Affordable Housing Needs Assessment” to estimate the supply of affordable housing
  • PCT 20-6 Inclusionary Text proposes to add Policy 2.16.5 to require municipalities to adopt an inclusionary housing ordinance within its zoning or land development code no later than 24 months after the effective date of the text amendment for development resulting in a net increase of 10 or more dwelling units with exemptions for census tracts which have a median assessed value for residential properties at or below 80% of the Broward County median value.
NOTICE: A public workshop regarding these items is scheduled for Thurs., January 16, 2020, at 9:30 AM, Room 302, Governmental Center, 115 S. Andrews Ave., Fort Lauderdale.