Here’s a fact that won’t shock you—the American housing affordability crisis is only getting more extreme. Almost half of U.S. renters are spending more than 30 percent of their income on housing, more than half can’t afford a $250,000 home, and millions more are struggling to keep a roof over their head and a door that locks.
It’s clear that a huge part of the problem is that zoning laws – local rules that determine what can be built and where – simply haven’t kept up. This legislative session, we have an opportunity to reform these outdated laws and push to build more homes in Washington.
House Bill 1782, known as the Middle Housing Bill, would create opportunities for small families, working people, and others by creating three tiers of housing based on population and proximity to local transit. This would give potential homeowners more choices, including cottages, duplexes, and triplexes, and make it easier for people to live near transit. But before passing this important reform, we need our representatives to strengthen protections to ensure that this new housing is affordable.
Will you send a message to your representative asking them to support missing middle housing in Washington?
Middle housing is crucial for thriving cities, and these bills are a necessary step towards finally ensuring that all Washingtonians, no matter how much they make or what their race is, have access to affordable homes. Though the bills also require local anti-displacement measures to ensure people and communities who currently live near transit aren’t forced out, the current measures aren’t enough.
We need to push our representatives to strengthen these anti-displacement protections and add provisions to ensure the housing that’s built is affordable. With these additions, the bills would help thousands of Washingtonians and would uplift communities of color that have been historically priced out of growing neighborhoods.
Send a message to your legislator today and urge them to vote yes on a strengthened HB 1782!