Friday, December 21, 2018

Expanding Housing Choice and Reducing Lake Oswego Severe Rent Burdens.

For a Thursday evening community meeting on severe rent burdens in Lake Oswego I prepared a four page PDF HERE that points out Lake Oswego remains under served by the nearly 45 year old HUD housing voucher program. (I attended the meeting as a resident).

To reach the 39 per 1,000 rate of vouchers per rental households in the rest of Clackamas county, vouchers in Lake Oswego would have to increase to 195, nearly EIGHT times the current level of 25 vouchers [Clackamas county has authorization for 1,656 vouchers].    

A key factor to explain why vouchers are not used more in Lake Oswego is that HUD metro wide fair market rents have not been high enough.


  1. Property owners in Oregon are now required to accept voucher holders using the same criteria as other applicants. 
  2. The publication this year of small area rents by HUD and the simplification of the process for adopting those rents makes it feasible for more vouchers to be used in Lake Oswego. [HUD no longer has to review requests for small area rents below 110% of the small area rent it publishes ]. 
The graphic pasted below shows that Lake Oswego ZIP Code rents could be increased by 32% to 51% in Lake Oswego zip codes without requiring any HUD approval. In all cases the housing authority would continue to approve individual voucher rents for rent reasonableness. 

In the PDF document I advocate, and provide draft language for, the city of Lake Oswego to submit a request to the Clackamas county housing authority to increase voucher rents in Lake Oswego zip codes 97034 and 97035.

 Originally created and posted on the Oregon Housing Blog.

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