Where’s James? Discussing the Sharing Economy for Affordable Housing
By: James Higa, Executive Director
I recently tossed around radical ideas about affordable housing with HIP Housing’s Executive Director, Kate Comfort Harr. HIP Housing, a San Mateo County-based housing nonprofit, was doing the shared economy before there was one.
Through HIP Housing’s Home Sharing Program, homeowners open up their spare bedrooms to low-income home seekers, who either pay rent or exchange household duties for reduced rent. This living arrangement benefits everyone, as both are able to save money, share utility costs, and provide mutual assistance. This also ensures that homelessness is avoided and empty bedrooms are filled in San Mateo County, a county with an exceedingly high cost of living.