Cost of Home

Cost of Home is a national campaign designed to improve home affordability for 10 million over the next five years. Habitat for Humanity International is mobilizing affiliates across the advocate for policies at the federal, state and local levels that will expand opportunities for low-income families and help them secure decent housing without sacrificing other basic needs. The organization is focusing its efforts in four specific policy areas: increasing the supply and preservation of affordable homes, equitably increasing access to credit, optimizing land use for affordable homes, and ensuring access to and development of communities of health and opportunity.

While Habitat is best known for partnering with low-income families to build and buy homes of their own, Cost of Home advocates will push for polices that will create affordability across the housing spectrum.

The need for this national campaign is sharply felt in New Jersey, the sixth most expensive housing market in the country. The mean income for renters is about $18 an hour, but a modest, two bedroom apartment requires an income of approximately $28 per hour, according to the latest Out of Reach report by the National Low Income Housing Coalition. Ultimately, the high cost of housing can force low-wage workers to sacrifice basic necessities like food, healthcare, and childcare among others in order to pay rent.

The first action that Paterson Habitat will take as part of the Cost of Home campaign is to mobilize its supporters and partners, with leadership from the statewide Housing and Community Development Network of New Jersey to urge state legislators to fully fund the Affordable Housing Trust Fund as proposed by Governor Murphy in his budget. This is the first time in a decade that a governor has made such a proposal.

In addition to meeting directly with legislators, Paterson Habitat will be mobilizing its volunteers and partners to reach out to their representatives to urge them to make investments that help make New Jersey an affordable place we can all call home.