Understanding how housing environments vary widely across the country, the National Association of Counties has unveiled the “Housing Solutions Matchmaker Tool”, a utility to help county officials develop policies tailored to their communities.
The tool, launched at 2022 NACo Annual Conference and Expo, will help managers understand their housing market and provide potentially helpful resources and policies to address key challenges. The Brookings Institute and the Aspen Institute lent their expertise to develop the matchmaking tool.
The tool provides key metrics by county, including housing costs, population size, housing quality based on vacancies, and comparisons with neighboring counties. Then, depending on the layout of a department, the tool offers tailor-made solutions.
In the city of Baltimore, for example, the tool identifies population loss as a major challenge based on the city’s demographic measures. Following its findings, the tool offers a set of solutions, including strategies to reduce vacancies through the creation of land reserves and the demolition of excess housing stock.
At the 2022 MACo Summer Conference, a panel of housing experts will address housing affordability in the breakout session “Let’s Talk Housing: National Problem, Local Solutions”. The panel will explore several issues from a Maryland-centric lens, including labor and supply shortages, soaring interest rates and inflation, the looming eviction crisis, inclusive housing and equity in access to transport.