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Attainable Housing | ProBuilder

Excerpt from ProBuilder Magazine May/June 2023 | By Jenni Nichols

White modern farmhouse and red garage with ADU

A solution for attainable housing—or housing within reach of people earning an area’s median income—has eluded our industry for the past several years. There are multiple causes—the cost of land, city requirements on zoning and home site footage, and NIMBYism (Not In My Back Yard)—but often it simply comes down to making a project pencil out … which is increasingly challenging and often not achievable.


In a recent meeting, a client questioned why so many industries can find ways to create more affordable solutions but the housing industry can’t. Most people can’t afford a Tesla, but there are attainable alternatives such as the Nissan Leaf or the Hyundai Kona. The new iPhone costs nearly $800, but a good quality smartphone is accessible for around $200. Why not housing? We don’t have the answer yet, but I believe it starts by rethinking the starter home.

Living room and kitchenette

The concept of the starter home originated in the United States after World War II, when young families wanted to buy a home as part of the American Dream. These homes differed in form over the years, from mill workers’ cottages, shotgun homes, bungalows, and split levels, and some buyers decided on brick rowhouses or duplexes for their first home.


As the starter home of old—likely detached, reasonably sized, and probably with a small yard—has become unattainable for most first-time homebuyers, new housing types have emerged to bridge the gap. Build-to-rent, modern multigenerational living, and density with dignity are three opportunities to deliver attainable starter homes today, even if they don’t exactly fit the old


...Bounty Series at RainDance


I love it when a city, a developer, and a builder come together to create the opportunity for something great.


While carriage houses (what we now commonly refer to as accessory dwelling units or ADUs) are an appealing addition to a community for multiple reasons, they can be a challenge to include in new builds.


The Bounty series by Brightland Homes (designed by Osmosis Architecture) is a collection of 53 single-family, detached units in the master planned community of RainDance...


Read the full article at ProBuilder.com

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