A married Dover, NH couple is building a 44 home affordable housing village with rentals of $1,000 – $1,200 monthly rentals to give firefighters, police, teachers and others homes they can afford in the area where they work.
John and Maggie Randolph in front of one of the tiny homes in the tiny-home community they are building in Dover, New Hampshire.
With US home prices still rising year-over-year, due to an acute shortage of housing, many Americans have had to dedicate bigger chunks of their incomes to living expenses, potentially leaving them “house poor.”
Enter John Randolph, a contractor, and Maggie Randolph, an architect, who are building a community of 44 tiny homes across four acres in Dover, a city of over 33,000. Dover is about an hour north of Boston near the Maine border.
The 384-square-foot homes will be geared toward service workers who earn $40,000 to $45,000 a year.
The homes are meant for “your entry-level schoolteachers, your entry-level firefighters, the people that are fixing your car or taking care of your mom and cooking her dinner,” John Randolph told the New Hampshire Business Review last fall. “They deserve to live in the area as well. They shouldn’t have to live an hour away and then come serve you every day and then drive home.”
The price per unit averages out to about $118,000 while the average cost of building a new home in the state is about $307,000.
The Randolphs are only able to keep costs this low due to a Dover affordable-housing initiative that allows developers to build more units than usually allowed under zoning rules at no extra cost, if they agree to keep rents under a certain price point.
This is something more small towns should do to attract affordable housing. Using ADUs, tiny homes, Park models and even Manufactured homes, many small and mid-sized towns could duplicate the Randolph’s village.
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Gary Fleisher, the Modcoach