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Historically, neighborhoods where middle housing is present offer more sales and rental price variety. Middle housing includes duplexes, triplexes, quadplexes, townhouses and cottage clusters (small homes on one lot that share a courtyard) as “middle housing.”
However, the City of Beaverton cannot require middle housing to be sold or rented at a particular price. Sellers set sales and rental prices based on their development costs and what they estimate people will pay.
Newly built middle housing will probably be sold or rented at market rates, but some may be more affordable by design. Living units in middle housing are often smaller than the typical detached house. Because price often increases as square footage increases, smaller homes can be less expensive. Operating and maintenance costs can be lower for smaller homes as well.
We know many people struggle to pay monthly housing costs and that affordability is an important community issue. As we develop new code standards to comply with HB 2001, we’ll consider ways our standards could help make housing more affordable.
Increasing housing supply might also take some pressure off the market, which is another way that this project can address housing affordability.
Allowing more housing options provides more options for affordability. For example, code changes likely will mean more opportunities for Habitat for Humanity and Proud Ground (two non-profits that work to help people buy affordable homes) to find sites that work for them, such as places for townhouses.
We’ve also added two land use applications specifically for affordable housing a couple years ago. These adjustment applications were intended to provide more flexibility for affordable housing developments. No fee or hardship criteria.
Also, the city’s Five Year Housing Action Plan, adopted in 2019, has a goal of providing a 218 affordable housing units (including 89 deeply affordable units) during that period as well as working with private developers to include 20 units per year of affordable housing. The plan also seeks to provide 60 households with affordable home ownership during the five-year period.