Earlier this month, with our friends at Foundation Communities, we celebrated the grand opening of Waterloo Terrace, an affordable housing community featuring 132 units. Located in North Austin, Waterloo Terrace is just one of several affordable housing projects we have been a part of over the last few years. With 132 units, families and individuals will be able to call Waterloo Terrace their own home sweet home. The formation of Waterloo Terrace came after the Austin City Council passed the Affordability Unlocked program in May 2019. The $250 million dollar bond was passed in favor to meet the City’s goal of building 60,000 affordable housing units by 2027. Affordability Unlocked intends to make building affordable housing units easier and less costly. Building units like Waterloo Terrace comes with time and patience, especially as the demand for affordable housing in Austin persists.
One may wonder what affordable housing is exactly. It’s defined as housing in which the occupant pays “no more than 30 percent of gross income for housing costs, including utilities,” according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Your annual household income determines your eligibility to qualify for affordable housing where you live. For some affordable housing programs in Austin, households are eligible if they make 80 percent or less of the median family income. Based on a four person household, that number was $78,100 in 2020, according to the City of Austin Neighborhood Housing and Community Development Office. Depending on the community you are looking to live in, you may be asked to apply or sign up for a waitlist to see when housing is available.
Last year, there were a total of 23,299 affordable housing units across Austin. The need of affordable housing comes into play with the supply and demand issue of housing the city is experiencing. Affordable housing is one of our main focuses at Civiltude. Additionally, Capital A Housing, a part of the Civilitude Group, was established to “cater to the growing affordable housing development segment.” With Affordability Unlocked, Capital A was able to begin the A at Lamppost affordable housing community. We look forward to sharing A at Lamppost with the public as it’s expected to be complete Spring 2021. Check out our construction update blog post about it here. For additional information and support on affordable housing in Austin, you can refer to the following websites: Foundation Communities, Austin Housing Coalition, Austin Habitat for Humanity, HousingWorks Austin and Community Powered Workshop.