Affordable housing developments in Point Breeze, championed as a way to ensure that longtime residents would not be priced out, are being bought up by people with significant access to cash. Though there are rules designed to prevent speculation on these properties, the fact that the buyers have the ability to put down significant down payments, or even to buy the properties in cash indicates that the affordable housing isn't having its intended effect.
Naked Philly does a great and very detailed presentation of what's going on with affordable housing in Point Breeze, but we wanted to highlight a few important points. It's clear that these properties are probably being bought by people who have a access to significant wealth, either through their families, or via other means.
What's unclear is whether these properties are accessible to people of low-to-moderate means in the first place: they cost between $125 and $250K. A quick glance at any Philly real estate listings website will tell you that there are many properties that cost less that $125K, and definitely less than $250K in the city. If this housing is to truly meant to keep longtime residents from being priced out of their neighborhoods, why is it more expensive than comparable housing in other neighborhoods? How are these properties not pushing them out to cheaper areas?
The upshot? Only one of the buyers of the affordable housing in Point Breeze has roots in Point Breeze. Seems like the rest are taking advantage of a program that really benefits them, but might not benefit the neighborhood.
· Buyers Gaming the System With "Affordable" Housing in Point Breeze [Naked Philly]
· Let's Talk About Affordable Housing [Philadelinquency]