The ‘3 Ps’ is the best solution: protect tenants, preserve communities, produce housing

In California, rent is skyrocketing, wages are stagnating, poverty is pervasive, and homelessness is rising. The median rental price for a two-bedroom apartment is about $2,300, and the housing affordability crisis isn’t confined to the state’s major cities. One in three Californians are severely rent-burdened, spending more than half their income on rent. Most renters are just one major life event away from eviction or even homelessness.


Median rent for a 2-bedroom apartment in Los Angeles.


Median rent for a 2-bedroom apartment in San Francisco.


Median rent for a 2-bedroom apartment in San Diego. [1]

California’s housing affordability crisis is not simply one of supply and demand. There is no shortage of expensive, market-rate housing available and being built. But as market-driven development flourishes, housing that’s affordable for families, seniors, recent college graduates, and too many others has become more scarce. We are seeing gentrification and displacement crises unfolding throughout the state and across the nation.

Middle- and working-class communities with unique character and culture are being decimated by the increased cost of housing. Teachers, nurses, and grocery clerks are forced to commute far from their jobs just to live in an affordable apartment. The less fortunate are forced to sleep on couches, in cars, or on our streets.

We are in a state of crisis. It demands an urgent, multi-pronged approach. Housing Is A Human Right advocates for the “3 Ps” — protect tenants, preserve communities, and produce housing:

  • Protect tenants: prevent gentrification and homelessness by keeping rents under control and discouraging evictions;
  • Preserve communities: support progressive, sustainable land-use policies that maintain neighborhood integrity and allow working- and middle-class families to stay in their communities;
  • Produce housing: Produce truly affordable housing through adaptive reuse and cost-effective new construction.

We need community-based solutions that put people over profit.