Update ADU/WDU programs to provide more housing opportunities for the workforce Create guidelines for adaptive re-use of commercial space for affordable housing Develop a new preservation strategy Strategy Highlights: Funding Sources and Uses
Preserve existing affordable housing funding resources Assess a commercial contribution policy Increase homeownership opportunities by providing down payment and closing cost assistance Strategy Highlights: Housing For Vulnerable Populations
Housing for Vulnerable Populations: ensuring the continuum of housing options through making affordable and accessible housing options available for persons with disabilities, seniors, and extremely low-income individuals and families, including those transitioning from homelessness These strategies are immediate steps that can be taken to address the need for more price-appropriate housing in one to two years. It is clear, however, that Phase 2 of the Plan a long-range implementation and resource plan will be necessary to address the 62,184 new housing units that will be needed in Fairfax County in the next 15 years. The market, alone, will not produce the necessary housing options for Fairfax County s future. The Fairfax County Department of Housing and Community Development and the Fairfax County Affordable Housing Advisory Committee are proud to share Phase 1 of the Fairfax County Communitywide Housing Strategic Plan.
Physical and mental health and well-being How Housing Supports the County s Plan for Economic Success Housing affordability is critically important for ensuring that businesses want to locate to Fairfax County and then stay here. The Economic Success plan lays out six broad goals to maintain, diversify, and enhance the strong and vital Fairfax County community in order to sustain and grow our economic prosperity:
It is anticipated that this document will be the first step in a two-part process, identifying the need in our community, setting targets for housing production, and suggesting initial implementation steps that can be addressed in the next one to two years. The second, and more challenging step, will be identifying long-term implementation strategies, and the additional resources needed to carry out those strategies. 5
Current Housing Needs for Low- and Moderate-Wage Workers Individuals and families with the lowest incomes face the greatest challenges finding housing they can afford. These households include many workers who are essential to the Fairfax County community. For example, a typical retail salesperson in the County earns less than 30,000 per year. Restaurant workers, housekeepers, childcare providers, home-health aides, bus drivers and security guards in Fairfax County also have an average income of around 30,0004. Working households earning 30,000 per year can only afford to pay 750 per month for housing, but the average rent in Fairfax County is more than 1,7005. The majority of overcrowded households include at least one child and have incomes below 50 percent of AMI. These workers are a critical component of our local economy and they deserve to have an opportunity to live and work in Fairfax County. What happens when working families earning low wages cannot find housing they can afford? In many cases, they live in overcrowded housing or commute to Fairfax County from other jurisdictions. Overcrowded housing continues to be a critical challenge in Fairfax County, with a total of 4,640 households overcrowded (1.01-1.5 people per room), and nearly 1,900 households severely overcrowded (more than 1.51 people per room). The majority of overcrowded households include at least one child and have incomes below 50 percent of Area Median Income (AMI). Given the prevalence of children in overcrowded households, families in our community may be outgrowing their housing units, but at the same time are unable to afford a larger home they can afford. Many public sector workers who serve the Fairfax County community cannot afford to live here.
Public Health Nurse Starting Salary - 51,254 Would need to work 6 years before earning enough to rent the average one bedroom unit The average monthly rent in Fairfax County was 1,764 in 2015. You need an income of at least 70,560 to afford the typical rent.
Opposition to new construction or increased density from existing Fairfax County residents results in too little housing being built, limiting supply and putting upward pressure on prices and rents. The private market meets the demand for housing for higher-income households; however, housing for low-income households is difficult and expensive to provide. In order to develop new housing or often to preserve existing housing at rents or prices that are affordable to our community s low- and moderate-income residents and workers, it is necessary for there to be some type of subsidy, either a financial subsidy provided in the form of a low-interest loan, grant or tax credit, a subsidy in the form of reduced land costs, an incentive in the form of an increase in the allowable density, a reduction in development approval requirements or all of the above.
Fairfax County s Housing Blueprint was a first step in achieving this vision, as it has focused affordable housing policies and resources on serving those with the greatest need, including homeless families and individuals, persons with special needs, and households with extremely low-incomes. The overarching principle of the Blueprint is that home affordability refers to a continuum of income and ability. The research and outreach conducted as a part of this strategic plan has re-affirmed this principle and the four main goals of the Blueprint: 1. To end homelessness in ten years; 2. To provide affordable housing options to special needs populations; 3. To meet the affordable housing needs of low-income working families; and 4. To increase workforce housing through creative partnerships and public policy
Phase 1 of the Communitywide Housing Strategic Plan contains 25 specific strategies Fairfax County can take within one to two years and with no new additional public resources to begin to produce and preserve more affordable and workforce housing. However, it is clear that in the mid- and longer- term, new and substantial resources will be required to ensure that all County residents and workers who want to live in the County including those with the lowest incomes and the most vulnerable economic situations can have access to safe, stable and affordable housing. These Phase 1 strategies are intended to be adopted as a full package of actionable steps; will require inter-departmental coordination and participation from the business and non-profit communities; and will set the groundwork for longer-term, more comprehensive strategies that will be detailed in the forthcoming Phase 2 of the Plan.
Within the Fairfax County Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) and the Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority (FCRHA), there are opportunities to make existing processes more efficient and to use existing resources more innovatively to leverage partnerships, bringing non-local money to the County to support the development and preservation of housing. These recommendations involve modifications to existing procedures within HCD and the FCRHA, as well as a move towards re- positioning FCRHA assets to use them more efficiently.
There are many ways in which changes to land use or zoning, or new approaches to uses on certain types of land, could significantly increase the supply and availability of housing affordable to the Fairfax County workforce. The County is currently undertaking a comprehensive update of its Zoning Ordinance and there are also planning efforts underway for particular neighborhoods in the County (e.g. the Route 1 corridor). These recommendations build off the County s current and recent land use and zoning studies, and go further to identify ways to use land more creatively to build partnerships and expand housing options.
B3. Develop a Preservation Strategy. Preserving existing subsidized and market affordable housing is vital to meeting the needs of low- and moderate-income individuals and families. The County should develop a comprehensive strategy that includes principles and guidelines around affordable housing preservation.
B8. Integration with the Zoning Ordinance Modernization Project. In 2017 the Office of Community Revitalization and the Department of Planning and Zoning initiated an effort to modernize the County s Zoning Ordinance to restructure it to make it more user friendly, and to prioritize key amendments for updating the Ordinance. Changes to the Ordinance might affect the ability to develop certain types of housing in specified areas of the County, and improvements to the Ordinance could enable more innovative housing preservation and development opportunities. The County should ensure that the preservation and development of affordable housing is considered during each relevant phase of the Zoning Ordinance Modernization process.
While the short-term strategies presented in this report do not include recommendations for dedicated funding for housing, it will be important in the mid- and longer-term to identify new resources to support housing development and preservation. In the short-term, there are ways the County and the FCRHA can deploy their existing resources more efficiently and to explore ways to shift certain resources to be used for those most in need. At the same time, the County should be planning for ways to identify new resources to support the development and preservation of affordable and workforce housing.
C6. Provide Downpayment and Closing Cost Assistance. Use proceeds from the sale of ADUs that are currently contributing to the Affordable Housing Fund to expand assistance to moderate-income first-time homebuyers in the County. In addition, look for ways to partner with County employers to expand employer downpayment assistance programs. C7. Review Options for Restructuring the County s Housing Trust Fund. Evaluate the structure of the Housing Trust Fund in light of the processes, funding and procedures of local trust funds in neighboring and comparable communities. Develop a plan for moving forward on changes that will create an efficient and effective trust fund. 16
As part of its commitment to ensuring that Fairfax County has a continuum of housing options, the community will continue to work to make affordable and accessible housing options available for persons with disabilities, seniors, and extremely low-income individuals and families, including those at risk of or transitioning from homelessness.
Tom Fleetwood, Director Fairfax County Department of Housing and Community Development Dean Klein, Director Office to Prevent and End Homelessness About the Office to Prevent and End Homelessness (OPEH) Established in 2008 to coordinate the implementation of Housing First and the Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness in Ten Years Highly successful model which has reduced homelessness in the community by 46 since 2008
complete the fingerprint-based national background check by September 30, 2018. In addition, the amendment will change the child protective services search requirement from every three years to every five years for applicants, adult residents, and all minors 14 years and older. Currently, the cost to complete a background check is 15.00. The current cost of the fingerprint-based national background check is 33.72, which will be an increase of 18.72. The state charges 57.00 per person to complete the fingerprint background checks for licensed family child care providers and centers.
years)* 2018 15.00 33.72 57.00 2019 2020 2021 15.00 2022 2023 33.72 57.00 2024 15.00 2025 2026 2027 15.00 2028 33.72 57.00 TOTAL 60.00 101.16 171.00 *(Please note that the state is waiving this fee for providers until September 30, 2018. After that date, the cost will
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