Local lawmaker wants affordable housing to be mandatory

Radha Herring, with Watermark Real Estate Group says, “I don’t know a lot of buyers who want a lot of 100K smaller, patio homes mixed in with their 300K neighborhood.”

But that’s what could happen in lawmakers pass a new state bill. It would give local governments the power to force real estate developers to include affordable housing in their new developments. Herring says she’s opposed to this on principle.

She says, “I fundamentally don’t think it’s fair that a developer be forced into what I call, ‘forced philanthropy’ if you will.”

And Lawrence Langdale, Legislative Chairman of the Horry Georgetown Homebuilders Association, says anyone else looking to buy a home in the neighborhood would ultimately suffer.

He says, “If you’re gonna reduce the price on that housing, the rest of the community is going to absorb that cost. Is it really fair to ask that small group to pay that additional cost to reduce these homes?”

State Senator Marlon Kimpson, the main sponsor of the bill, says it’s a viable solution to the affordable housing crisis and would also allow thousands of low income people to live closer to work.

Sen. Kimpson says, “Every working class citizen making under $100K should be supporting this legislation. Many of our citizens are living in poverty and this is for you.”

But Herring questions if it’s a solution Myrtle Beach needs to begin with.

She says, “I don’t really think that affordable housing is a issue in our market in Myrtle Beach. As a broker, we’ve sold properties ranging from 20,000 to 2 million.”

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