affordable housing

Is Your Community Talking about Housing?

Across the state, folks are talking about the impact of New Hampshire’s housing crisis. Renters are struggling to compete for the small number of available units, prospective homebuyers are being priced out of the market, young people are unable to put down roots, older residents are stuck in too-large homes, and employers are challenged to recruit and retain a qualified workforce. The effects of the housing market touch all of us.

Help is Available for Homeowners Behind in Paying Mortgage, Property Taxes or Utility Payments

During the COVID-19 pandemic, a Hillsborough County couple faced an enormous financial burden. Increased expenses, as well as a reduction in income, weighed on their family. Despite tapping their retirement fund and other resources, they fell behind on their property taxes and electric bill. Then they heard about the NH Homeowner Assistance Fund program, and applied. Soon, to their great relief, they received word that the program would provide the $6,500 in assistance needed to pay the past-due bills.

How Much Housing Do We Need? New Hampshire’s Regional Housing Needs Assessments

Housing is a hot issue. In New Hampshire and throughout the country, scarce available housing is putting a strain on working families and preventing businesses from recruiting and retaining workers. Impacts from the housing crisis are rippling through communities. Studying housing issues is a core-function of NH’s Regional Planning Commissions (RPCs) and through 2022, each RPC has been hard at work preparing a Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA) aimed at addressing this issue. These updates are a function of RPCs per NH State Statute, RSA 36:47.

A Look at the New Housing Appeals Board

The Housing Appeal Board was established by the legislature during the 2020 session and consists of three full-time board members appointed by the New Hampshire Supreme Court, who are deemed "learned and experienced in questions of land use." The Housing Appeals Board hears appeals from local land use board decisions involving “questions of housing and housing development.”

NHARPC CORNER: Regional Planning and Coordination are Critical to Addressing New Hampshire’s Housing Crisis

New Hampshire faces a housing shortage that is affecting urban and rural areas alike. There is growing recognition that a lack of housing options is stifling our economy, harming businesses’ ability to recruit employees, placing financial hardship on many working and middle-class families, and, in some cases, leading to housing insecurity and homelessness. This recognition is backed up by the data. Over the past couple of years, rental vacancies have hovered in the range of 1-2%, well below the 5% that’s recognized as an indicator of a balanced market.

2020 Land Use Law Conference

Full day virtual conference for municipal land use officials including members of planning and zoning boards, planners, land use administrators, select boards, town and city councilors, building inspectors, code enforcement officers and public works personnel. Presentations will focus on the legal authority and procedures these land use boards must understand with content structured to be beneficial to both novice and experienced municipal officials.

What Can Your RPC Do For You?

The nine New Hampshire regional planning commissions collectively authored the following series of snapshots to illustrate the many ways in which they can support your local planning needs.

NHARPC logo

Preface

The primary role of a Regional Planning Commission (RPC) is to support local municipalities in their planning and community development responsibilities. This is done in a variety of ways such as:

A Primer on Short-Term Rentals Compliance and Enforcement

As we begin to open business for many of our tourist attractions, hotels and other lodging properties, we are seeing an uptick in short-term rentals (STRs) from residents or visitors who have met the 14-day quarantine requirement.  Where the goal is to get away from crowds, especially in larger, urban areas, New Hampshire is an attractive vacation plan.
 

Funding Your Community Development Projects with CDBG

Claire Knowles became homeless after her husband died in a car crash in 2009. With nowhere to go for a hot meal, she relied on the Friendly Kitchen in Concord.

“It was hard carrying everything you owned in a suitcase or backpack,” says Knowles. “It was very important to know that that kitchen was there.”

But when the Friendly Kitchen was destroyed by fire in April 2011, the area’s low- and moderate-income residents faced the prospect of going hungry. Raising the money to rebuild the nonprofit facility seemed a monumental task.