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Caldwell resident speaks about difficulties finding affordable housing in the Treasure Valley

Posted at 3:00 AM, Sep 27, 2023

CALDWELL, Idaho — Where can you find cheap housing? That is the question many are asking themselves, as the price for rentals seems to keep increasing across the Treasure Valley.

"I was looking for housing and had the absolute worst time ever. There was nothing,” said Angela Hernandez, a Caldwell Resident.

With housing costs on the rise, finding something affordable has become increasingly difficult and the reality is that affordable can mean altogether different things for different people.

That involves the amount of income available and if that income will be enough to pay both rent and bills. But also be able to allow people to live a comfortable life.

“It was about a year of just hunting, searching, and looking, and we didn't find anything,” said Hernandez.

Angela is one of many in the Treasure Valley who feel this way as they seek a home within a livable budget. She says that for some time, she was living with family members and tried to get assistance through a shelter, but was told there was nothing available for her and her family.

"It's the absolute worst feeling; you don't know where you are going to go or if you are ever going to find affordable housing,” said Hernandez.

According to a report released by The National Income Housing Coalition, in Idaho, for every 100 households with extremely low incomes, there are only 38 affordable and available rental units.

"So when you start talking about the availability of affordable housing, there is not a lot we would consider truly affordable,” said Mike Dittender, the Director of the Caldwell Housing Authority.

After struggling for over a year to find affordable housing, Angela says she got lucky and was able to find the housing she desperately needed.

"A lot of us feel like we are just down on our luck, and we do feel hopeless, but I can tell you that Caldwell Housing Authority has made me feel the complete opposite,” said Hernandez.

The Caldwell Housing Authority, also known as the Farmway Village, tells Idaho News 6 that on average they receive about 10 to 15 applications per month.

Many of those applicants are on the waiting list for 6 months to a year.

The Caldwell Housing Board of Directors just approved a master plan to assist with that current need last year.

“Which includes adding 72 more units of apartments and 200 more units of RV parking. We are well underway with the RV parking, and we should see those units open up sometime next year,” said Dittender.

Angela tells me the Caldwell Housing Authority has offered that stability for her and her family, and she has something less to worry about.

“Overall life is durable financially, which is nice."

If you would like to submit an application please call (208) 459-2232 or visit the Caldwell Housing Authority website.