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Nonprofit Says It Has Seen A Big Spike In People Seeking Affordable Housing

A nonprofit organization that owns 2,200 affordable housing units in southern Maine and southern New Hampshire says it has seen a large increase in the number of people seeking those accommodations.

Avesta Housing Development Officer Greg Payne says, through the first three quarters of this year, nearly 3,000 households have contacted the organization looking for an affordable place to live.

“But in that same period of time we were only able to help 278 households move into an apartment, and that’s because the housing that we do have is filled, for the most part, and there’s very limited turnover and there’s so few dollars available to create new housing,” he says.

Payne says the number of people calling Avesta looking for affordable housing is growing significantly year to year, something he says reflects what’s going on in the community as a whole.

“From 2014 to current we’re talking about a 30 percent increase in the numbers of people seeking an affordable home from Avesta,” he says.

Payne says the agency is very concerned about budget and tax legislation being considered by Congress that it believes would make it a lot harder to build more affordable housing.

This story was originally published Nov. 30, 2017 at 5:50 p.m. ET.

Ed is a Maine native who spent his early childhood in Livermore Falls before moving to Farmington. He graduated from Mount Blue High School in 1970 before going to the University of Maine at Orono where he received his BA in speech in 1974 with a broadcast concentration. It was during that time that he first became involved with public broadcasting. He served as an intern for what was then called MPBN TV and also did volunteer work for MPBN Radio.