The New Mexico Housing Strategy
The Housing Strategy leads the state, New Mexico local governments, and private and nonprofit partners toward the highest impact actions to address challenges in:
- Producing housing across the income continuum;
- Preserving and improving existing affordable housing, both privately and publicly owned, and redeveloping underutilized and vacant properties to increase supply and catalyze economic development;
- Building homeownership opportunities to retain the state’s high homeownership rate, especially among low and moderate-income, and racially and ethnically diverse, households;
- Creating housing stability for people vulnerable to and experiencing homelessness and residents with special housing needs; and
- Advocating for effective federal housing policies and regulations.
A Call to Action
The backdrop of the New Mexico Housing New Strategy is a housing market that has become increasing difficult for all but the highest income New Mexicans to afford.
Lack of affordable housing not only impedes the ability of households to be self-sufficient and invest in economic growth for their families—it also has negative consequences for state and local economic development and growth. The latter can be easy to overlook, as it is often hidden, but the impacts are significant.
Without adequate affordable housing:
- New Mexico’s urban areas cannot continue to attract new businesses,
- Existing businesses, particularly small businesses, cannot keep standard operating hours and cannot grow;
- Low-income renters are forced to move more frequently, disrupting community ties, stable employment, and educational consistency for their children;
- Moderate-income renters cannot achieve ownership and pass on wealth to their families; and
- Persons with special needs—including seniors, New Mexicans with disabilities, residents vulnerable to and experiencing homelessness—are caught in a perpetual and costly cycle of housing instability.
An “all hands on deck” approach is needed to address the significant need for housing in New Mexico. This Call to Action enlists the State of New Mexico, local governments, nonprofits and foundations, private entities, and elected officials to join together and address the state’s housing challenges. It provides the strategic direction to collectively move forward.
Background on Housing Strategy Development
To support development of the Housing Strategy, an Advisory Committee volunteered their knowledge and expertise in bi-monthly meetings and participated in focus groups and interviews. The Housing Strategy was also informed by a resident survey that reached nearly 1,400 New Mexicans and represented the needs of socioeconomically diverse residents.
The Advisory Committee (AC) provided leadership over development of the New Mexico Housing Strategy that is:
- A living strategy that provides a “roadmap” for all partners to address the continuum of housing needs;
- A common source of communication to housing partners and residents about the state’s goals and intentions;
- Practical solutions for streamlining barriers to addressing housing needs and reform of existing systems and programs; and
- Big ideas to change and improve the housing landscape.
The AC engaged in in-depth discussions about the strategies to meet the variety of housing needs in New Mexico. Those meetings included unconventional outside-of-the-box ideas, strategies that are complementary across the needs continuum, and strategies that will stabilize households and help them attain economic mobility.