Affordable housing dilemma

“The abundance of affordable homeownership opportunities at the perimeter of our region often unexpectedly strains household budgets: for every dollar an American family saves by moving to more affordable housing, 77 cents are spent¬†commuting back to their jobs.”

This quote is from a Huffington Post story about Denver but the same could be said about Cortland County.

Housing is expensive in the City of Cortland especially with the impact of student housing adding to the mix. So those looking for cheaper rents often move to the outlying areas of the county.

And it works – sort of – until people really factor in what they are spending for transportation. And when the car breaks down and you still need to get to work in the city, then you are in a real bind.

First Transit does offer a Dial-a-Ride option that can pick people up anywhere in the county and take them anywhere else in the county. The maximum fare is $6 each way and I often hear that people cannot afford that. But how much do they pay for that car every month, insurance and gas at over $4.00 a gallon? If they figured in all of the expenses, they might realize that Dial-a-Ride is a good deal. And I hope they feel that’s it’s a better deal than losing their job.

Jan

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