Mark Patton provided the topic and led the discussion on affordable housing during the Sept. 1 meeting.
Guests and Visiting Rotarians
Pat Barron-- RC of West Chester, PA
Jodi Covington-- Guest of Mark Patton
Cassi Eltin-- Guest of Deb Dunkhase
Dale Simon-- Guest of Jack Cameron
President's Moment
Deb Dunkhase officiated as President pro tem and led off with a description of the wonderful reception she, Nancy and Gary Pacha had in Huehuetanango, Guatemala on their planning trip for Iowa MOST.  Nancy presented the Huehuetanango RC flag.
Rotarians in the News
This year's RYLA participants were featured in the newspaper on Sept. 1.
Nut Sales to support our RYLA students has begun.  Brian Adamec will bring order forms and samples to meetings through October.  Consider this as a great gift for clients, family, and friends for the Holidays.  Last year the nut sales supported four RYLA students.
Deb Ockenfels said that the District has awarded $36,000 to Project Warm this year which will get the project into a second level of discount from the retailers.  Between coats and the literacy project, which
was also approved AM Rotary needs to raise another $2500.  The Fundraising Committee will be meeting soon to determine what we will do to raise that money.
At least 17 members shared happy bucks moments.
Our own Mark Patton served as both program chair for the month, and speaker for the Sept. 1 meeting.  He talked about issues surrounding affordable housing.  He made the presentation very interactive by going through a quiz to test our knowledge about affordable housing, and he gave prizes in the end to the people with the highest number of correct answers.
These were some of the questions and answers:
What is the % of income that a renter should be able to afford for a rental, or for that matter, a homeowner can afford to pay for housing?  30% of gross income
What went from 24% to 26% recently-- the number of millennials living with their parents
What is at at least a 50 year low?  Home ownership
What was the estimated apartment vacancy rate in Iowa City in 2013?  1.3%-- A healthy vacancy rate is considered to be 5-7%.  This is why Iowa City rental rates are out of whack.
What have owner-occupied housing costs done lately?  They went up 8.2% nationally.
What is happening with the average age of the housing stock?  It is going up rapidly in age, now averages 37 years.
How much are foreclosures down in the last 12 months?  29%
What is the average rent for a 2 bedroom rental locally?  $799
How much can a worker earning $10.50/hr pay for rent? $500.  (Notice the local disconnect.)
How much is a typical down payment to purchase a house?  For an average priced house of around $200,000 the down payment will range from $40,000 (20%) down to 10% or $20,000 except for an FHA loan, which would be 3.5%. 
Mark also talked about financial literacy and, with much group discussion on the matter, it was obvious that too little financial literacy is actually taught in the schools or at home by parents.  In Mark's experience the immigrant population is better prepared to save sufficiently to afford down payments today and are more careful with their resources and the use of credit than people who grew up in the U.S. and are millennials today.