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housing

KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

The rising cost of housing in America's most desirable "creative" cities troubles Richard Florida, urbanist thinker and author. In those cities, the cost of housing is affordable only to the creative class themselves. The rest of the working population — those in service industry or manufacturing — struggle to keep up with rising housing prices.

Florida says what's happening in Seattle, specifically, is surprising even to someone like him, "supposedly in the know."

The Sam Hill mansion on Capitol Hill is on the market for $15 million.
KUOW Photos/Megan Farmer

The Sam Hill mansion on Capitol Hill is the most expensive real estate listing in Seattle.

Should the owner have to pay a luxury sales tax? It's one of the big proposals in this year's Seattle mayor's race.

Justin Robinson, left, and the man who bought his apartment building, Dan Robins.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

When an old apartment building goes on the market, all of a sudden, everybody starts doing the math.  


Demand is soaring for Seattle-area homes. Buyers who want to succeed are bidding up prices. This Seattle house recently sold for $100,000 over the asking price.
Courtesy of Seattle MLS

Bill Radke speaks with Geekwire writer Monica Nickelsburg about a new Seattle based startup called Loftium which will help you buy a house — if you agree to rent out a spare bedroom on Airbnb and split the profits with them.

KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Bill Radke speaks with John Fox, of the Seattle Displacement Coalition, and Roger Valdez, of Smart Growth Seattle, about their (very different) ideas for how to make sure Seattle has enough affordable housing for those who need it.


KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Emily Fox speaks with KUOW's Region of Boom reporter Joshua McNichols about the team's upcoming coverage of Seattle's housing crisis.


Carl Slater at the Good Shepherd Center in Wallingford
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Seattle’s Wallingford neighborhood is known for its restored bungalows and for Gasworks Park. But some people worry it could lose its soul if the city’s affordable housing plan goes through. 


Seattle may regulate Airbnb, VRBO and other short term rentals by next year. The Seattle City Council discussed a new proposal Wednesday, after the vacation industry opposed earlier versions.

Bill Radke speaks with Rex Hohlbein, the creator of the BLOCK Project, a plan to house the homeless with a tiny home on every residential block of the city. It's a way, Hohlbein believes, to break down stereotypes and connect the homeless more with their community.

Radke also speaks with Kim Sherman, who owns the first backyard that will have a tiny home. She explains why she wanted to do it, her initial concerns and how she believes others can be convinced that this is the right thing to do.

Gentrification of neighborhoods can wreak havoc for those most vulnerable to change.

Sure, access to services and amenities rise in a gentrifying neighborhood. That is a good thing. But those amenities won't do you much good if you're forced to move because of skyrocketing housing costs.

That is why neighborhood and housing advocacy groups have spent decades searching for ways to protect longtime residents from the negative effects of gentrification.

KUOW PHOTO/Megan Farmer

The mayoral race in Seattle is heating up. King County Democrats have endorsed Cary Moon, and so has today’s panelist, former mayor Mike McGinn. Labor unions have come out in support Jenny Durkan. What’s the significance of this latest round of endorsements?

The City of Seattle is going to spend at least a quarter of million dollars defending legal attacks against the high earner income tax passed by City Council on a 9-0 vote. Is it common for a local or state government agency to pass laws they know they need to spend money to defend in court?

Is Seattle becoming Amazonia? And because we're still not sick of talking about the eclipse, we ask the panel where they watched the celestial show.

Listen to the show on Fridays at noon and join the conversation on Twitter using #KUOWwir.

A sketch of The Emerald, a 40-foot condominium tower planned at 2nd and Stewart near Pike Place Market in downtown Seattle. Chinese investors helped make the project possible.
Hewitt Seattle

Seattleites love to blame outsiders for skyrocketing housing prices.

Wallingford is one of several Seattle neighborhoods that will see an increase in affordable housing under the citywide rezone
Flickr Photo/Wonderlane (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/9jiSQm

Jeannie Yandel talks to Becco Zou, a realtor with Berkshire Hathaway in Bellevue, and Marc Stiles, a real estate reporter with the Puget Sound Business Journal, about how foreign buyers impact the local housing market. 

Apartment buildings in the University District, Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

One thing all of the candidates running for Seattle City Council Position 8 agree on: The rent is too damn high. But they're divided on what to do about it. 

Foreclosure housing house
Flickr Photo/Taber Andrew Bain (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/6WB4v4

Seattle’s real estate market is booming, but contrary to what you might think, foreclosures are still happening. Foreclosures can be disruptive in neighborhoods.

Last year, about 700 people in Seattle lost their homes to banks. The city wants to help them. 


A mural on 20th Avenue in Seattle's Central District
KUOW Photo/Paul Kiefer

A plan to bring more affordable housing to Seattle's Central District was approved by the City Council today. 

It's one part of the city's goal to add 20,000 new units for lower-income households (those making less than 60 percent of the area’s median income).

The King County Council decided to put a proposed property tax increase before voters this November. The levy renews funding for veterans and now also, seniors.

$360,000 is the asking price for this 740 square foot house in the Rainier Beach neighborhood of Seattle
KUOW Photos / Megan Farmer

Sonny Kwan, a real estate agent in Seattle, was shocked recently by a listing he saw just off Rainier Avenue South.

Top candidates for Seattle mayor debate in a forum hosted by KING 5 and KUOW.
KING 5

Are Seattle taxes too high? And where should the city look for future funding? Those were the big questions for six of the city’s candidates for mayor Monday, at a debate aired live on KUOW and KING 5.


Earl Lancaster of Earl’s Cuts & Styles, used to be surrounded by other black-owned businesses, and a working-class community. Today, most of those businesses are gone.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Earl Lancaster has been cutting hair at the corner of 23rd and Union for a quarter of a century.

"Some of the highlights have been cutting some of the Sonics, Mariners. Cutting young kids and turn into fathers and cutting their kids’ hair. It’s been amazing," Lancaster said as he glided his clippers along a man's scalp.


Wallingford is one of several Seattle neighborhoods that will see an increase in affordable housing under the citywide rezone
Flickr Photo/Wonderlane (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/9jiSQm

The City of Seattle is planning a sweeping rezone of urban villages across the city to create more affordable housing. The public can weigh in now on a draft environmental study of the zoning changes.

Some people gathered outside of the UW Medical Center Wednesday to voice their concerns about the Campus Master Plan.
KUOW Photo/Angela Nhi Nguyen

The University of Washington has revealed a 10-year plan to expand its Seattle campus and some people are voicing their concerns about the effects it could have.

On Wednesday at Denny Park, former Mayor Mike McGinn revealed a new tax plan in the Seattle mayor's race
KUOW Photo/David Hyde

Economic inequality is a top issue in this year's Seattle mayor’s race. On Wednesday, former Mayor Mike McGinn said he has a new tax plan to help fix that.

Dan Schiaffo's business card reads 'Laser Craftsman.' Tap/click on the image for more photos.
KUOW Photo/Carolyn Adolph

It's a lot less expensive to live in Bremerton than on the Seattle side of Puget Sound. That's allowed many people to pursue their way of life. But housing costs have started to tick upward, and builders are redeveloping land where cheap rental housing used to be. The result: fewer cheap places around.

Homeless RV
Flickr Photo/A. Kwanten (CC BY NC ND 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/Bv6MSo

Robert Loomis had a good job and had just signed a mortgage on a new home then he started having chest pains. This is his story.

Bill Radke speaks with Augustine Cita of the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle and Sean Flynn, board president of the Rental Housing Association of Washington, to discuss the new Fair Chance Housing law proposed by Mayor Ed Murray. 

Brettler Family Place, part of the complex at Sand Point Housing
Solid Ground

Charleena Lyles lived in housing owned and operated by Solid Ground in Seattle's Magnuson Park. The nonprofit organization manages a campus with 175 housing units for people who have come through the experience of being homeless. Mike Buchman is the communications director at Solid Ground. He told Kim Malcolm that a neighborhood has been created at Sand Point for hundreds of people. 

Houses in Queen Anne
Flickr Photo/Harold Hollingsworth (CC BY-SA 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/9C1rMq

Bill Radke talks to Denise Rodriguez, the deputy director of Washington Homeownership Resource Center, and Skylar Olsen, a senior economist at Zillow, about what makes the Puget Sound real estate market so competitive and how people are able to find and afford housing. 

War boxes visible in a Bremerton alley.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

Tiny, affordable houses line some of Bremerton’s alleys. They’re called “war boxes,” remnants of the massive building boom that transformed Bremerton during World War II.

Studying that boom and the housing it left behind offers clues on what it would take to truly meet our region's current housing needs.


Courtesy of Mithun Architects

A coalition of black community groups chose Juneteenth, or Freedom Day, for the ceremonial groundbreaking of a new affordable housing real estate project in Seattle's Central District.

June 19 is the day in 1865 when the abolition of slavery was announced in Texas.

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