Fall Notes from the Director

Danica and Bodhi at the Canyon Street Neighborhood earlier this year. Photo by Kathleen Hosfeld

Danica and Bodhi at the Canyon Street Neighborhood earlier this year. Photo by Kathleen Hosfeld

For many, autumn is a time of introspection. At Methow Housing Trust, in addition to managing two construction projects (Phase 2 of home construction in Twisp and Mazama), this is a season of organizational and systems evaluation, on-going needs assessment, and documentation of the huge learning curve we've had the privilege of managing so far! Phase 1 homes are now occupied, and the neighborhood HOA's are starting to take form and design their community cultures.

As the Executive Director of MHT, I spend much of my reflective and creative energy thinking about our mission, and how this community can effectively address the acute affordable housing shortage we are experiencing. I recently spent some time with a nationally recognized Community Land Trust (CLT) guru, exploring the data behind the housing needs for our community. By looking at local vacancy rates, coupled with “cost burdened renters” (those families spending more than 33% of their monthly income on housing), she determined that the Methow Valley needs to add about 350 more housing units to meet our current needs. By 2021, MHT will have added 21 homes (and aims to add significantly more in Winthrop in the near future), it appears that the CLT homeownership model will be putting a meaningful dent in that need. We are also beginning to partner with capable partners to help leverage housing solutions in the rental and senior housing markets as well.

As an MHT supporter, I hope you feel proud of what we’ve all accomplished in just two years. August 1st marked my two-year anniversary of becoming the Director of MHT. Never could I have imagined such generosity, effective team-work and community support leading to such tangible impact so soon. Thank you so much for your faith in our mission, and the MHT staff and board’s capacity to carry out that mission.

Methow Housing Trust