All you have to do is look at the research cited in the report The State of the Nation’s Housing 2022, Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University to confirm what you are seeing, hearing and maybe feeling in your own neighborhood. The housing market is in a frenzy and while many are profiting from the volatility, unheard of numbers of families and people are suffering. The workforce of Cape May County is facing challenges to remain housed here. They are priced out of buying. Their rentals are sold out from underneath them after years of successful landlord-tenant relationships. The stock of anything affordable is disappearing for the creation of larger, costlier seasonal homes. There are always stories of some housing struggle behind our partner families, but as of late, the volume and desperation of these stories is alarming.
Most recently one man said we were his last hope. Another was of a mom and her child who had taken to living in their car after a several months long search for another rental. People who are contributing to and supporting our economy are reaching dead ends, like this one single father we heard from. “I currently reside in Cape May County and am in need of a home to raise my children. I am employed in the field of engineering as a fabricator. My father is not present in my life and my mother passed away a few years ago so I have no family support system. I am handy, hardworking, and determined that me and my children (age 6 and 3) will have a home to call our own”.
As the situation about housing continues to unfold, it is crucial to ensure that homeownership remains attainable, that people can choose the type of housing they prefer, and that safe, decent and affordable housing remains an enduring national priority.