Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Journey Home, video stories of real lives

To access "Journey Home" click on

About Journey Home
As part of our ongoing efforts to provide an opportunity for New Jersey residents to tell their housing stories, the Housing and Community Development Network of New Jersey and Fair Share Housing Center launched  Journey Home.  We recruited individuals willing to allow us to videotape and share their stories publicly about the challenges they face living in New Jersey and finding homes they can afford.
These testimonials  demonstrate to key policy and opinion makers that their decisions impact real people.  They show that these are real families with real needs that will be affected by the  decisions our elected officials make.  We hope these videos will demonstrate the need for a housing policy that builds all kinds of homes for all kinds of people in our state.
Housing Market Reform Act
The Housing Market Reform Act is a housing policy proposal developed to protect people like our Journey Home residents.  It seeks to bolster our economy by making it easier to build and rehabilitate housing for New Jerseyans of all income levels.  Complying with the Mount Laurel doctrine, this proposal would create incentives for developers creating mixed income housing and provide flexibility for local governments.  Most importantly, this legislation creates a fair playing field, recognizing municipalities that already accommodate large numbers of lower income households and encourages those that do not.
According to the  National Low Income Housing Coalition’s Out of Reach 2010 report, an average 2-bedroom apartment would require an individual to earn an hourly “housing wage” of over $24 to be able to afford fair market rent.  At minimum wage, an individual would have to work nearly three full-time jobs to afford the average 2-bedroom apartment in New Jersey.  The Garden State is the fifth most expensive state in the country to rent a two-bedroom apartment and the state’s rental housing market is still too expensive for many New Jerseyans to afford.  More than a half-million NJ households are deemed to be using too much of their monthly budgets just for housing.
That is why the Housing and Community Development Network and the Fair Share Housing Center developed the Housing Market Reform Act.  To help New Jerseyans find decent, quality homes any where in the state or help them stay in their homes.

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