EBR Housing Authority, BRAC say it may be hard to find affordable housing

Published: Jul. 12, 2022 at 5:15 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 12, 2022 at 6:20 PM CDT

BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Folks around the capital region may have a hard time finding a place to live. Prices are rising due to a lack of inventory.

When there is not enough on the market, prices soar.

“What has happened there has been huge demand for housing. So, what we have a growing number of families seeking affordable housing, however, the supply just doesn’t exist,” explained Chief Executive Officer J. Wesley Daniels with East Baton Rouge Housing Authority.

Daniels explained that 4,400 applicants made it onto their affordable housing waitlist.

Daniels says there are thousands of other families looking for a reasonable place to live.

“I think because we serve in many cases, those individuals that need some type of rental assistance during the time, a lot of it is attributed to job loss in many cases. So, this is you know a tough economy,” added Daniels.

Daniels says they partner with 1,200 property workers, working with landlords to find a price that won’t break someone’s bank, but as of now, they need more. The Housing Authority is currently building more homes and apartment complexes in hopes of combating the housing market shortage. However, no matter what folks can or cannot afford, they could face challenges when looking for a place to live.

“So, inflation definitely drove the cost up of building houses, and that means fewer people building houses because it wasn’t really within their budget, which means there are fewer houses for people to purchase,” explained Andrew Fitzgerald, who is the senior vice president of business intelligence with BRAC.

Between pandemic-related issues, supply and demand, and inflation, Fitzgerald says there are a variety of issues hitting the housing market.

“The lack of ability is just a shortage and hundreds of things have been tried across the country: different policies, rent control. The only thing that works is to lower housing prices is to build more houses,” said Fitzgerald.

EBR Housing Authority officials say that if you are on one of their waiting lists to find a place to live, they are asking you to be patient. The EBR Housing Authority requires certain requirements for folks to be in their program. Your income is one thing they use to consider your application. If you are a property owner and willing to work with EBR Housing Authority, you can sign up online.

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