Emily De Vito
Updated: February 24, 2020 11:08 PM
Created: February 24, 2020 10:15 PM
ALBANY – Affordable housing in the city of Albany is something many low income families have trouble finding. Monday night the Albany Community Land Trust, a nonprofit, showed off some of the vacant properties it has rehabbed to help fix the problem.
"We're a city of tenants and this is the kind of housing there's a great demand," said Executive Director of the Albany Community Land Trust Susan Cotner.
The homes were renovated with funding from New York State. They have to be rented at an affordable rate for the next 15 years and then after that they could consider selling the homes.
It cost about $70,000 to renovate a home on First Street that they showed off. The four-bedroom single family home will be rented for $850 a month. A vacant home on Orange Street was rehabbed for more than $200,000. There are two three-bedroom units and they will be rented each for $700 a month. Over on Elk Street a six-bedroom home was renovated for about $77,000. It will be rented out for $850 a month.
“Some of the newer stuff that's out there you're paying $900 to $1,200 for one or two-bedroom apartments,” said Cotner.
Affordable Housing is a problem the Albany Common Council discussed back in December. They wanted to start to look into potential rent stabilization for some properties in the city.
“We totally feel that as we work with the families that are very stretched you know $800 is still a lot of money for rent,” explained Cotner.
Also in December, the city said out of about 30,000 properties a little more than 1,000 were vacant. Some of these newly renovated homes are surrounded by homes with “X” marks on them. A Red X on a vacant building indicates it’s unsafe to enter. Cotner said buying some of those “X” buildings from the Albany County Land Bank is its next project.
"We look forward to rehabbing them and turning them into again, good quality, affordable housing,” explained Cotner.
She said these recent batch of 10 homes that have been renovated are a step in the right direction though.
“We've had a lot of families say I got a sister, I got a brother, I got my mom needs a house where can we get that,” said Cotner. “So that's what's been interesting we've been rebuilding neighborhoods one family, extended family at a time.”
To learn more about the Albany Community Land Trust, click here.
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