MISSOULA — It seems like the housing crisis we're facing is insurmountable but the effort to find new solutions is continuing in Missoula.
Affordable housing, building costs, the rental market are topics that have become unavoidable if you live in Missoula — or you’re trying to live in Montana.
Community leaders from the League of Women Voters and Habitat for Humanity say in order to solve the housing crisis it will take all hands on deck. For that reason, the agencies hosted some of Missoula’s affordable housing advocates during a webinar Tuesday night.
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Missoula’s Housing Trust Fund, affordable housing plan, challenges, and ideas were all brought to the table.
Housing specialist Jordan Lyons shared that Missoula County currently has a shortage of 2,400 housing units.
Heather Harp with Habitat for Humanity echoed his concerns by describing the challenges of building affordable homes with the current cost of land and labor.
"To effectively address this issue, we need to partner with the city and with other jurisdictions, with housing nonprofits, and with developers and other stakeholders to improve the policies that we have to deal with from the state and federal government." - housing specialist Jordan Lyons
“So, it is very much a collaboration across sectors and across agencies because this matters,” Harp noted.
That collaboration also includes everyday Missoula residents.
Leaders are urging community members to volunteer at an organization such as Habitat for Humanity and to also provide input when topics like the housing trust fund are brought to the table.
They say that if the community unites and conquers then the housing situation will improve.