Families thrive when they live in affordable, high quality and healthy housing. However, low income families and individuals too often do not have access to these necessities. They suffer disproportionately from preventable health problems like asthma, toxic stress, and obesity. These problems are caused and exacerbated by social determinants of health: poorly constructed and maintained housing; a lack of health care and green spaces; and rising energy and water costs often strain the operating budgets of multifamily housing, resulting in deferred maintenance and poor indoor conditions.
To help property owners and managers tackle these problems, LISC created a green and healthy framework to integrate cost effective healthy and green practices into existing affordable housing rehabilitation and property management.
The project has the dual benefit of lowering building energy and water costs, while also improving the health and wellness of residents and staff. Our team has supported affordable housing developers to implement health related building improvements focused on reducing asthma and obesity risks such as smoke free housing, green cleaning, integrated pest management, and active design strategies.
Collectively, LISC’s NYC and Boston offices have worked with over 70 multifamily housing owners to create healthier housing, track energy and water use, and undertake energy or water saving strategies in over 9,000 apartments (4,000 in NYC; 5,000+ in MA). This work resulted in substantial energy, water and health improvements.
Maximum NYC Owner Cost Reductions Per Apartment/Year
Beyond work with owners, our efforts have resulted in policy and programmatic changes:
If you are interested in taking the information in this toolkit further, you can work with your local partners, and/or bring in your local LISC office to address green and healthy housing on policy and/or programs.
Tools and resources to help affordable housing owners, developers and property managers pursue cost effective practices and implement health driven property management.
Key activities for nonprofit intermediaries to consider that our offices undertook to support affordable housing owners and managers.
LISC’s work in NYC and Boston surfaced several policy opportunities to more fully incorporate health into capital needs assessments, renovation projects, and ongoing property management.
General resources, case studies and topic-specific reports related to green and healthy housing.