The Eastern Lakes Region Housing Coalition was established as a non-profit corporation in 2005. The Board of Directors is composed of individuals representing community, business, healthcare, manufacturing, real estate, construction, and education entities from the rural towns east of Lake Winnipesaukee. Our purpose is to promote responsible and affordable housing for our local workforce.
Why We Exist:
- Community Master Plans and regional statistics indicate that a growing number of people in our area can’t find affordable places to live.
- While salaries have remained level, the cost of housing has risen dramatically in the past decade.
- A lack of affordable/workforce housing close to jobs and services stifles economic growth,increases traffic problems, creates worker stress, and affects the quality of life in our communities.
- Retail, service, clerical, health care, child care, public safety, and small business workers cannot afford to rent or purchase suitable homes.
- Lack of affordable housing forces many families to pay far more than 30% of their income for housing, or live in overcrowded,substandard conditions.
- Well-kept, reasonably priced housing can provide individuals and families with safe and healthy places to live.
We Serve the Towns of:
- Alton, Brookfield, Effingham, Farmington, Freedom, Middleton, Milton, Moultonborough, New Durham, Ossipee, Sandwich, Tamworth, Tuftonboro, Wakefield and Wolfeboro.
What You Can Do To Help:
We need your community’s involvement and support. You can make a difference. Please contact us if you are interested in joining a committee, being an on-call volunteer, or offering your financial support. You can help with community education, advocate for affordable workforce housing with local and elected officials, or support responsible housing and zoning proposals.
Memorial Enabling Fund:
The Nancy Clement Beck Memorial Fund is a permanent asset established to enable the coalition to secure the purchase of properties or to bridge expenses in expectation of permanent funding for affordable housing. It is crucial for a housing group to have sufficient assets to act when opportunities arise. There is a significant lag time in obtaining development funding. To learn more about this fund, or to contribute, please contact us.
We plan to continue to approach the communities in our region to seek ways to work together to address the workforce housing need. This will be done through sharing information and resources and direct contact with planning boards and community leaders to work cooperatively on future projects and activities. There are resources available through state and regional agencies we can bring to our area to assist our communities as we address zoning barriers, provide for smarter growth to protect our rural character and other related issues our towns share.
We continue to be active participants in state wide groups such as the NH Workforce Housing Council and Regional WFH Coordinators. It is important to network with people involved in groups affected by the lack of affordable workforce housing – i.e. the Business and Industry Association and NH Homebuilders Association, as well as individuals with the many government, non-profit, and foundation groups that help finance community development. We must keep up to date with what is happening statewide and nationally, to maintain an awareness of resources, and to share what is happening in our region.
The Housing Coalition is taking a comprehensive approach to this issue. The communities in our region share one economy, road system, school district, health system, and common recreational programs. Because we are so closely interconnected, we must work together to find effective solutions to the workforce housing shortage.
Our Approach Includes:
Providing community education regarding the need for housing and how this shortage impacts our towns.
Working with town officials and planning boards to create town ordinances that promote workforce housing.
Identifying and accessing private, local, state and federal resources to keep new and rehabilitation construction affordable.
Our goal is to create a diversity of housing in our region to ensure that all of our friends, neighbors and family members can find affordable housing in their own communities. A diversity of housing means the creation of a mix of housing types including market-rate, affordable, and mixed income housing. It includes both ownership and rental opportunities in single and multi-family options. Options for more modest-sized and lower-priced homes are critical to the life and economy of our region.