California’s Teacher Housing Crunch
Director of Real Estate & Asset Development, Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD)
In most major cities in California, the highest-paid teachers only earn enough to rent an affordable one-bedroom apartment (using the federal definition of affordable housing as 30 percent or less of household income). While there is more research needed, the availability of affordable housing is considered an important factor in retaining teachers. The Learning Policy Institute’s research on teacher retention includes recommendations that school districts and the state consider housing incentives, such as rent, relocation and down payment assistance, as well as discounted homes and subsidized teacher housing. The movement to provide affordable housing for teachers and other school employees is spreading throughout the Bay Area and into other regions of the state where the housing supply is limited or too expensive for teachers.