MHP in the Media Archive
2012 (Jan - June)
2012's Little-known Legislative Gains, Leigh Rosenberg, Minnesota 2020, 6/19/2012
Report shows good news on housing market; bad news for homeless, Alexandria Echo Press, 6/17/2012
Regional approach needed to support fair housing in Twin Cities metro — but will grassroots voices be heard in planning and decisions?, Sheila Regan, Twin Cities Daily Planet, 6/15/2012
Letter of the Day: Rental housing, Chip Halbach, Star Tribune, 6/12/2012
Renters Need an 86-Hour Work Week, Lee Egerstrom, Minnesota 2020, 5/2/2012
A pitch for affordable housing, Lori Sturdevant, Star Tribune Minnesota Matters, 4/18/2012
Low vacancy rates leading to higher rents:Twin Cities' average rent is projected to continue rising, Aaron DuBois, Minnesota Daily, 4/3/2012
Bonding for building: Minnesota organizations work together to get legislature to fund housing, Alleen Brown, Twin Cities Daily Planet, 3/30/2012
Housing squeeze tight for Minnesota's low-income families, Steven Dornfeld, 3/26/2012, MinnPost
In Twin Cities, rent is up, while vacancies are down, Delane Cleveland, 3/22/2012, Channel 12 News
Housing major is often overlooked, Emily Morgan, 3/21/2012, Minnesota Daily
Metro rental housing availability hits 10-year low, Jim Hammerand, 3/21/2012, Minneapolis St. Paul Business Journal
A push for state bonding for affordable housing, Mark Anderson, 3/20/2012, Finance & Commerce
Housing Pro Talks Metro Rental Market Woes, Fox 9 News, 3/20/2012
Sweet home data from February, Jim Buchta, 3/20/2012, Star Tribune
Report: Twin Cities rental market tightest in a decade, Jessica Mador, MPR, 3/20/2012
Minnesota rated the least affordable state for housing in the Midwest, Jessica Mador, MPR, 3/14/2012
A little empathy for unemployed women, Debra Fitzpatrick, Star Tribune, 3/6/2012
Debunking Myths of Affordable Housing, Chip Halbach, Minnesota 2020, 2/17/2012
Housing organizations look to collaborate, Fox 21 News, Duluth. 2/15/2012 6pm newscast. 11:04-11:40 segment features MHP's Housing Institute
TPT documentary sheds light on area's innovative affordable housing projects, Anna Pratt, The Line, 2/15/2012
Housing documentary spotlights Apple Valley development, Andrew Miller, ThisWeek Newspapers, 2/8/2012
Documentary highlights innovative housing, Janet Moore, StarTribune, 2/7/2012
Bonding Homes, Bonding Communities, Lee Egerstrom, Minnesota 2020, 1/24/2012
OPINION: USDA investment stabilizes Minnesota's countryside. Lee Egerstrom, Twin Cities Daily Planet, 1/20/2012
Homelessness on the rise in the Twin Cities schools: Shayla's story. Alleen Brown, Twin Cities Daily Planet, 1/6/2012
John Michaelson, Minnesota News Connection, 8/31/2011
Paul Tosto, Minnesota Public Radio, 12/22/2010
Jessica Mador, Minnesota Public Radio, 12/17/2010
The nation's public housing system is poised to undergo historic changes. Some housing advocates are saying "too much, too soon," while other contend it can't happen soon enough... Click here for the full story.
Bill Aims to Save Public Housing With Private Financing
Sharon Rolenc, MN News Connection/Public News Service, 11/10/10
ST. PAUL, Minn. - About 150,000 housing units have been lost nationwide, according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The reason: The deteriorating buildings needed repairs, but lacked adequate federal funding to get them done... Click here for the full story.
Frogtown's Foreclosure Story: Rentals
Scott Carlson, Finance & Commerce, 11/9/10
The latest buzz is that foreclosures remain close to record levels with the bulk of filings now caused by to single family homeowners either taking big pay cuts or losing their jobs. / That’s why I found it so illuminating this week to learn that some of the Twin Cities neighborhoods hardest hit by foreclosures are ones with a heavy concentration of rental housing... Click here for the full story.
Twin Cities Housing: Livable Communities Program Falls Short
MHP letter to Star Tribune, 7/5/10
Tim Thompson's June 12 commentary ("Affordable housing takes a hit in metro"), and Patricia Nauman's June 22 response ("Housing takes more than a village, or city"), each shed light and yet missed a major shortcoming with the Metropolitan Council's Livable Communities Program... Click here for the full letter.
MN Still in Grip of Crisis in Housing
Molly Young, Star Tribune, 6/15/10
Thousands fewer jobs and thousands more foreclosures add up to a lingering housing crisis, suggests a study released Monday. / While the number of residential construction jobs fell to a 13-year low in the first quarter of 2010, home foreclosures hit an 18-month high, according to the quarterly report from the Minnesota Housing Partnership... Click here for the full story.
Report: With Foreclosures Up, Recovery Still Eludes Housing
Scott Carlson, Finance & Commerce, 6/15/10
Minnesota logged more than 6,700 foreclosures during the first three months of 2010, the highest quarterly number posted in a year and a half, the Minnesota Housing Partnership said Monday. / That’s one key indicator why Minnesota’s housing market has yet to make an economic rebound, the St. Paul-based nonprofit organization said in its latest “2 × 4” Report... Click here for the full story.
MN's Elusive Economic Recovery: Foreclosures on the Rise Again
Sharon Rolenc, Laura Thornquist, MN News Connection/Public News Service, 6/14/10
ST. PAUL, Minn. - Economic recovery continues to elude Minnesota's housing market. New data from the "2-by-4" report put out by the Minnesota Housing Partnership reveal the highest number of recorded foreclosures in six quarters. Jobs in residential construction continue to decline, and homelessness remains a problem, particularly among families with school-age children. / Chip Halbach, executive director of the Partnership, says there is a time factor at work... Click here for the full story.
MN Housing: Still a Long Way from Normal
Paul Tosto, MinnEcon/MPR, 6/14/10
MinnEcon readers know we've been concerned about the next wave of foreclosure problems in Minnesota and their potential effect on any housing recovery. A new report today from the Minnesota Housing Partnership shows why there's reason to be concerned. / It also offers a little hope... Click here for the full story --along with Elizabeth Dunbar's MPR News: Report: Foreclosures rise sharply in Minnesota
A Housing Crisis for the Working Poor
Jim Spencer, Star Tribune, 4/24/10
In Minnesota's recession-racked economy, it took Teresa Jackson months to find a $10-an-hour part-time job parking cars at Twins games. She earns $1,000 to $1,200 a month. Her two-bedroom duplex in north Minneapolis rents for $750 a month. Jackson's rent is well over half of her income... Chip Halbach, the Minnesota Housing Partnership's director, says this situation is not sustainable. "If you're in that lowest wage range of $10 an hour, you're not going to be able to find any decent apartment," Halbach said... Click here for the full story.
Star Tribune commentary: "Lake Street fire--A question of safety, affordability"
Chip Halbach, 4/21/10
In the aftermath of the deadly Lake Street fire two weeks ago in Minneapolis, the safety of the Twin Cities' rental housing stock has been the focus of attention... Some might wonder why people would be willing to live in these clearly unsafe conditions... Click here for the full commentary.
Apartment Vacancies, Homelessness Rising in Minneapolis, St. Paul
Brandi Stillings, Twin Cities Daily Planet, 4/15/10
Homelessness is climbing, jobs are scarce and as a result apartment vacancies are at a five-year high in Minnesota. According to a report from the nonprofit Minnesota Housing Partnership, metro area vacancy rates for rental housing rose to a five-year high of 7.3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2009, with little change in vacancy rates over the past five quarters... Click here for the full story.
Tough Climb for MN Housing Construction Workers & Delinquent Homeowners
Laura Thornquist, MN News Connection/Public News Service, 4/5/10
Being a housing construction worker in Minnesota right now is a tough road to travel. New data from the "2×4" report by the Minnesota Housing Partnership (MHP) reveals that fewer workers were able to earn a living by building and rehabbing homes than in any fourth quarter since 1992, as the number employed fell to 8,500. In the last four years, Minnesota has lost over half its housing construction jobs... Click here for the full story.
A Necessary Conversation
MHP letter to Pioneer Press, 3/31/10
Bob Shaw’s March 28 story (“Is any home good enough for the homeless?”) brings to light a critical challenge for Minnesota communities. Unfortunately, the story also wrongly quotes me as saying that housing developed by Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity, one of the state’s leading developers of decent homes for lower-income families, is a “bad deal.” In fact, I would have said just the opposite... Where do we go as a community?... Click here for the full story.
Minnesota Housing Construction Jobs Tumble
Scott Carlson, Finance & Commerce, 3/25/10
Employment in Minnesota’s residential construction sector hit an 18-year low in the fourth quarter of 2009, one sign of continuing trouble in the housing industry, according to the Minnesota Housing Partnership. But one housing industry insider predicts that the dearth of new residential building in the last couple years could turnaround in three to five years, resulting in a shortage of construction labor... Click here for the full story.
Would-be Renters Forced to Live with Family, Friends
Jennifer Bjorhus, Star Tribune, 3/23/10
The recession may have officially ended last summer, but a new report out Monday shows continued turmoil in housing. At 7.3 percent, the apartment vacancy rate in the Twin Cities is the highest since 2004 and jobs in housing construction fell below 8,500-- the lowest since 1992... Click here for the full story.
Jessica Mador, Minnesota Public Radio, 10/1/09
MHP researcher Leigh Rosenberg says the numbers clearly show the impact of the ongoing recession: "A lot of families are really struggling to retain housing and to afford the housing that they do have when it competes with other needs. There can be a real struggle for families when there is a choice between: Do I pay my rent, or do I buy more food this month?" Click here for the full story.
Chip Halbach, 7/23/09
Minneapolis, MN – A Minneapolis public housing program reflects the dire need for Section 8 vouchers: those on a recent waiting list don't stand to find help until July, 2034. Click here for the full commentary.
Shannon Guernsey, 7/20/09
[The Star Tribune's] June 15 editorial: "Carefully consider housing data," points to fewer homes for sale yet staying on the market longer and -- compared to the year before, overall -- selling for less. For 2009's first quarter, MHP's just-released Quarterly Housing Indicators frame another aspect of the housing picture: the real-life impact on Minnesota families. Click here for the full published letter.
Annie Baxter, Minnesota Public Radio, 7/1/09
A new report shows that homelessness among families in Hennepin County is on the rise. The report from the Minnesota Housing Partnership finds that many low-income earners are falling behind on rent because of the recession. Chip Halbach, the non-profit's executive director, said some renters are doubling up when they can no longer afford rent. Others fall into homelessness. Click here for the full story.
Kirsti Marohn, St. Cloud Times, 6/20/09
New statistics from a statewide nonprofit [MHP] show that a growing number of St. Cloud-area residents are spending an unaffordable portion of their income on housing. Click here for the full story.
Chris Newmarker, Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal, 6/1/09
The recession is making it increasingly hard for Minnesota households, especially low-income families, to keep their homes, according to a report out from the Minnesota Housing Partnership. Click here for the full story.
Jim Wishner/Steve Powers, Public News Service, 5/27/08
St. Paul, MN – Minnesota's public housing is showing its age. A new report by the Minnesota Housing Partnershipfinds sharp funding cuts and rising maintenance costs have combined to put public units in more than 200 communities across the state in jeopardy. Executive Director Chip Halbach says the units serve an essential need. Click here for the full story.
Mark Anderson, Finance and Commerce, 4/11/2008
Minnesota has long enjoyed being a standout in all kinds of state rankings, but here’s one that hurts: Minnesota has the worst rental affordability among 11 Midwestern states, according to a survey conducted by the National Low Income Housing Coalition.
Mackenzie Ryan, St. Cloud Times, 4/8/2008
The average renter in the St. Cloud area pays more than what is affordable on housing, according to a national housing report released Monday. The report uses housing and census data to determine an area's so-called "housing wage" — the wage employees must earn to spend 30 percent of their income on housing and utilities. Workers in St. Cloud must earn $12.23 an hour or $25,440 a year to afford a two-bedroom apartment, the National Low Income Housing Coalition study found. To afford a one-bedroom apartment, workers must earn $10.21 an hour or $21,240 a year, it said. Yet the average St. Cloud-area renter earns about $9.34 an hour.
Kevin Giles, Star Tribune, 3/30/2008
Heather Jenson of Monticello came to the podium Sunday to describe how her family's expenses mounted after her husband's car accident in 2002, followed by bankruptcy and finally the loss of their house. Then came Sharon Glover of Golden Valley, who described abusive treatment by a lending company because she had to wait for her Social Security check before making her monthly mortgage payment. Click here to read on.
Jaime Reese, Fox 9 News, 3/30/08
MINNETONKA – The Minnesota Housing Partnership and the think-tank Minnesota 2020 hosted a forum on the housing crisis Sunday afternoon. Across the country, 10 percent of homeowners owe more money on their mortgage than their house is worth.Click here to read on.
Julianna Olsen, KARE 11 News, 3/30/08
After the crisis comes change. On Monday, the Bush administration is expected to unveil its plan to keep a closer eye on Wall Street. The plan, in part, would grant the Federal Reserve new powers to keep markets stable. It would also create a watchdog commission for the mortgage market; a step that probably won't help those already mired in Minnesota's mortgage mess.Click here to read on.
Glen Barbour, 5 Eyewitness News, 3/30/08
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Housing values for property tax purposes have fallen sharply throughout the Twin Cities area, an ominous sign of budget pressures for local officials but a potential boost for tax-weary homeowners. Click here to read on.
On March 30, Minnesota Housing Partnership and Minnesota 2020 hosted a town hall forum on the impact of foreclosures on Minnesota’s communities. Although much is being done at state and federal levels to address the consumer side of the equation, legislative solutions to rebuilding communities that continue to be pummeled with vacant, foreclosed properties have not been proposed. Almost all of the forum’s speakers implored state and federal lawmakers to provide leadership in creating a comprehensive and targeted response to our unnatural disaster. You can watch a full video of event on MN2020’s Web site.
Jim Wishner/Chris Thomas, Public News Service, MN, 3/17/08
St. Paul, MN – A new law signed by Governor Tim Pawlenty could help keep a roof over the heads of thousands of Minnesotans who rent property. It is aimed at making rental rates affordable for people at the low end of the wage scale, according to Barb Jacobs with the Minnesota Housing Partnership.Click here to read on.
Chip Halbach, 3/12/08
Recently, state officials said that our economy is in recession and Minnesota is facing a budget deficit of $935 million. Tom Stinson, the state's economist, explained that the housing market is the major cause of the economic slowdown. He noted that last year Minnesota's construction industry lost 8,000 jobs and is expected to lose another 13,000 in 2008.Click here to read on.
Jenna Ross, Star Tribune, 2/20/08
About 3,700 people filed through Plymouth City Hall over two days to pick up applications for Section 8 housing vouchers the city distributes. Those 3,700 will compete in a lottery for 300 spots on the city’s waiting list. Other agencies have seen similar demand for the vouchers, which subsidize rent for low-income people.Click here to read on.
Charlie Shaw, Saint Paul Legal Ledger, Feb. 4, 2008
Skyline Tower in St. Paul and the Shingle Creek development in North Minneapolis both provide affordable housing for low-income Minnesotans. But only Skyline, which was built in 1971 and overlooks I-94, qualifies for a state property tax break for affordable housing. Click here to read on.
Hannah Lobel, Utne Reader, Nov-Dec'07
Affordable housing developments like this one are springing up across the country, showing that green homes can and should be built for everyone, not just because they're good for the environment, but also because they're healthier, more comfortable, and--yes--more affordable. Click here to read entire article. This article features Viking Terrace, a project in Worthington that was supported by a MHP-funded housing study and community development plan.
Kerri Miller, Midmorning, MPR, 10/23/2007
As the Metropolitan Council requires Twin Cities communities to build thousands of units of affordable housing, cities and residents raise concerns about sharing the burden and the opportunity. Guests include Chip Halbach, executive director of MHP; Steve Lampi, Mayor of Brooklyn Park; Peter Bell, Chair of the Metropolitan Council. Click here to listen
Lora Pabst, Star Tribune, 10/19/2007
The Met Council is requiring cities to build thousands of units while residents worry about crime, property values.Click here to read on
Jim Wishner/Craig Eicher, Public News Service, MN, 10/13/2007
A plan to provide 1.5 million new housing units for low-income families is halfway through Congress. The U.S. House has approved the “National Affordable Housing Trust Fund.” Chip Halbach, with the Minnesota Housing Partnership, says it would have a big impact in Minnesota.Click here to listen
Jim Wishner/Eric Mack, Public News Service, MN, 9/13/2007
New Census Bureau statistics show the cost of housing in Minnesota is emptying a lot of wallets. Barb Jacobs with the Minnesota Housing Partnership describes the crisis facing many of the state’s families. Click here to listen
Jamie Reesse, Fox 9 News, 9/12/2007
Many Minnesota homeowners are feeling stress after a census survey shows nearly 34 percent of homeowners spent more than 30 percent of their income on housing in 2006.Click here to watch the report.
Chip Halbach, 8/24/2007
On Aug. 9, hundreds of people turned out for the U.S. House Financial Services Committee hearing on predatory lending at the Minneapolis Central Library. Committee Chairman Rep. Barney Frank surveyed the standing-room-only scene as speakers told of how boarded-up homes are blighting their communities. Click here to read on.