MISSOULA — The Missoula City Council recently approved a new housing project for downtown Missoula.
But the luxury condos have a stipulation – some of the units must be “affordable.” But just what is considered affordable housing depends on who you ask.
"What is affordable to me may be different than what is affordable to other individuals," commented Missoula Community Planning Development and Innovation director Eran Pehan.
Some historic homes on East 4th Street will soon be torn down, documented, and replaced with high-end condos.
The Missoula City Council is requiring the developers to make 20% of the new units affordable in exchange for the public right of way.
"A couple who makes around $67,000 a year would be able to purchase that home,” Pehan told MTN News." Those units will be available for purchase to people earning 120% percent of the area median income.
Pehan explained that the pricing fits into the city s housing plans.
“We have to partner with the private sector if we want to develop affordable housing at the level that is needed. This is a great example of something that we did that's a little out of the box to help achieve our goals."
The cost for the affordable units is $215,000 for a studio apartment and $243,000 for a one-bedroom unit.
For a 30-year fixed mortgage -- depending on the down payment -- the monthly payment on a one-bedroom condo would be between $960 and $1,300.
According to the 2020 Missoula Housing Report, 120% of the area median income for a one person household in 2019 was around $61,000.
"We know that we need housing,” Pehan said.
And in an area where homelessness and affordable housing are the top issues, “that's going to require us to develop in new and different ways than we have developed in the past,” she added.
Pehan says the developers have not submitted a demolition application yet.