City addresses housing crisis, hopes to make living more affordable

Posted at 10:11 PM, Jan 25, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-26 01:11:16-05

The City of San Diego devoted part of the year's first meeting to addressing the housing crisis. They held a Housing Summit on Wednesday to hear from local leaders and advocacy groups on how to make housing more affordable. 

The current housing situation affects thousands of people, from those struggling to pay their bills to people sleeping out on the streets. 

Miguel Malvido served three years in Vietnam. After fighting for his country, he’s now fighting for a place to live.

“That’s the only thing I can afford,” said Malvido. “Five-hundred-dollars. That’s what I’m paying right now.”

He can barely afford to rent a tiny room inside a San Ysidro apartment.

“There’s three of us there. My daughter, my wife and I. I’ve been looking for a place to rent but they’re kind of expensive for the amount of money I get.”

Malvido applied for Section 8 housing but was told it could take 7-10 years to get approved. Everywhere he looks is way above his budget.

“It’s $1,500 a month and the low income is between $1,000 and $1,200 so there’s no way I can rent something like that.”

So for now, his tiny room is the only roof over his head.

“It’s not very comfortable,” said Malvido. “My daughter is 16 years old and everything we have to do we have to do it outside the room. We just sleep in the room and that’s about it.”

The San Diego Housing Federation says they’re working to lower the cost of housing production and find ways to subsidize housing for those who need it.

In Wednesday’s Housing Summit, councilmember Christopher Ward proposed an 11 Step action report. The report offers solutions including reducing requirements on developers, tax rebate and exemptions for affordable housing developments, and exploring the construction of more affordable housing on city and public land.