Silicon Valley's Affordable Housing Glut


It's a madly kaleidic and unpredictable world, and even the wisdom of government housing planners apparently can't keep up. The San Jose Mercury News reports today that

In Silicon Valley, the nation's least affordable housing market, hundreds of subsidized apartments built during the boom are sitting empty because developers can't find seniors and other low-income tenants to rent them.

The main reason: Rents in the region have plunged as the economy sagged, allowing some low-income renters to find deals nearly as good or better on the open market.

As the article goes on to explain, this subsidized housing, mostly intended for "seniors and renters at the higher end of the low-income scale," isn't even an option for poorer large families. Why subsidize housing only for those types? "Developers have been drawn to build senior housing because it is less controversial than other low-income housing and more likely to be approved by neighbors and the city council."

The whole article is worth reading. Thanks to Adrian Moore of the Reason Public Policy Institute for the link.