What is “affordable” housing in Pelham?


A Niagara real estate development company has approached the Town of Pelham seeking financial concessions in order to build three apartment buildings—two larger structures with 28 units each, and one smaller building with eight units.

The developer seeks concessions approaching $1 million dollars, including reduced or zero charges and fees, and four years zero property tax with a graduated increase to full taxation in year ten.  The developer also seeks an expedited approval process.

The apartment units would be on the market for 15 years at an “affordable” rent.

After year 15, the developer would be free to sell them as individual condominiums, presumably seeing a substantial profit in the process.

Given the economic realities of the current real estate market, in which developers generally seek to maximize profit by building high-end, single-family homes that are out of the reach of younger buyers entering the housing market, and retirees seeking to downsize, are these concessions a price that you, as a taxpayer, would be willing to pay?  And what is an “affordable” monthly rent, anyway?


This survey has closed.  Look for results in the July 17 issue of the Voice.