More than 25 percent of Bend residents have a very difficult time paying for their housing each month. This is called rent burden. The term rent burden applies to renters and home owners and is determined by census data.
Rent burden is defined by looking at the percentage of one’s income spent on housing costs. If someone pays more than 30 percent of their income on housing, they are considered rent burdened. If someone pays more than 50 percent of their income on housing, they are considered severely rent burdened. Paying this amount may lead to financial insecurity, since residents often forego other necessary expenses in order to maintain housing.
“As Bend grows and changes, the City wants to increase affordable housing options to help local families have financial stability,” said City of Bend Affordable Housing Manager Lynne McConnell.
In 2018, the Oregon legislature passed HB 4006, which mandates that cities with at least 10,000 residents and at least 25 percent of its residents experiencing severe rent burden conduct a meeting to discuss causes and potential solutions to ease rent burden. The City of Bend’s Affordable Housing Advisory Committee will host the discussion about causes of rent burden and potential solutions on Dec. 12.
The City of Bend invites the community to provide input on a variety of topics affecting rent burden including:
- Adding fourplexes and increasing housing supply
- Prioritizing $500,000 of federal funding
- Planning the Central Area
- Locating housing
- Improving public transit
- Training for workforce needs
More information: www.bendoregon.gov/affordablehousing