housing

HENRYK SADURA / STOCK.ADOBE.COM

Updated at 2:55 p.m. CT

Wisconsin residents who lost income due to the coronavirus pandemic can get help paying their rent, and farmers will be eligible for direct cash payments, under new programs Gov. Tony Evers announced Wednesday.

The $50 million aid to farmers program, $25 million rental assistance program and another $15 million for food banks and those fighting hunger is all paid for under the federal coronavirus relief bill.

Susan Bence

COVID-19 has turned our economy upside down. While Milwaukee leaders are trying to figure out how to fund the city’s budget and continue providing services, many residents worry how far their funds will stretch.

On Monday, the Judiciary and Legislation Committee spent most of the afternoon discussing a proposal to freeze property assessment at last year’s level until further notice.

zimmytws / stock.adobe.com

As stay-at-home orders have been extended in most states due to the coronavirus pandemic, there’s been a greater focus on housing more generally. Skyrocketing unemployment and uncertainty about the future has made it more difficult for people to make rent.

Henryk Sadura / stock.adobe.com

The 2008 economic recession hit Milwaukee hard. The housing market wasn’t spared and with it came a wave of foreclosures. Property values still haven’t quite recovered in many neighborhoods throughout the city.

Maayan Silver

Around half a million people need legal aid in Wisconsin and can't afford it. One main reason they need legal aid: eviction.

That's why Legal Action of Wisconsin — the largest provider of legal aid services for low income people in southeastern Wisconsin — set up the Eviction Defense Project.

Philip Montgomery

Every year, there are thousands of evictions in Milwaukee County. A new exhibition based on the best-selling book Evicted brings the crisis to life.

The exhibition is in an event space called the Mobile Design Box on Milwaukee's near west side — minutes away from Marquette’s campus. When you walk through the doors, you're greeted by a bright yellow banner with the word "evicted" written across it.

LaToya Dennis

When the U.S. housing bubble burst in 2008, the country was launched into the most severe recession since the Great Depression. For many families, this meant the loss of the family home.

Between 2006 and 2014, around 9 million American families lost homes due to foreclosure. There have been many studies on the ways foreclosure impacts someone's personal and professional life, but a recent study analyzed its impact on someone's political life.

ronstik/stock.adobe.com

If you’ve bought or sold a house recently, or just seen the forest of for sale signs around town, you know the Milwaukee real estate market is hot right now. Demand is outstripping supply in many parts of town. 

READ: 'Milwaukee Magazine' 2019 Real Estate Guide Demonstrates The City's Cresting Housing Market

UW-Milwaukee SALUP

In 2002, the U.S. Department of Energy launched its first solar decathlon, giving college teams the opportunity to design energy-efficient houses powered by renewable energy. Since its inception, more than 150 collegiate teams from around the world have participated.

Teran Powell

The City of Milwaukee Housing Authority was granted $2.3 million Wednesday to help promote the economic advancement of public housing residents.

Milwaukee is one of a handful of cities that will get a chunk of a $14 million Jobs Plus grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Brian Tomaino / Courtesy of Housing Authority of the City of Milwaukee

Throughout the month of May, neighborhoods around the country are hostings events called “Jane’s Walks.” The walks honor the work of the late Jane Jacobs, an advocate for the needs of everyday people in urban planning. The walks are citizen-led and are aimed at spurring conversations about the neighborhoods and the people who live in them.

JERAMEY JANNENE / FLICKR

Rental assistance recipients could soon be considered a protected class in Milwaukee County. A new proposal relating to fair housing would ban landlords from refusing to rent to people in housing assistance programs. 

The plan is expected to go before a county board committee later this month.

Current federal law does not require landlords to accept housing choice vouchers, therefore they can legally refuse to rent to voucher holders.

Marti Mikkelson

Community leaders are hoping a $10,000 grant will help Milwaukee get its arms around the ongoing issue of eviction. The money will go toward developing a long-term plan to keep people in their homes. 

Mayor Tom Barrett announced the grant Wednesday from the “Advancing a Healthier Wisconsin” Endowment at the Medical College of Wisconsin.

For many poor families in America, eviction is a real and ongoing threat. Sociologist Matthew Desmond estimates that 2.3 million evictions were filed in the U.S. in 2016 — a rate of four every minute.

"Eviction isn't just a condition of poverty; it's a cause of poverty," Desmond says. "Eviction is a direct cause of homelessness, but it also is a cause of residential instability, school instability [and] community instability."

LaToya Dennis

Every year in Milwaukee, thousands of eviction notices are filed. The state Senate is expected to take up legislation later this month that critics say unfairly favors landlords -- and would increase the number of evictions. Republican proponents maintain it’s about ensuring quality housing for tenants in the most affordable way to landlords.

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