SALT LAKE CITY (News4Utah) – In a big tent meeting, the Utah Housing Gap Coalition heard from local leaders, researchers, activists, and developers on ways to better inform the public about the lack of affordable housing. 

According to research by the Gardner Policy Institute, the national average price of a home in 1991 was $125,000 and is now $187,000, but in Utah the average price of a home that was $125,000 in 1991 is now $347,000. If we continue at this rate of increase, the average cost of a home will be $700,000 in 26 years. 

Abby Osborne is the Vice President of Government Affairs and Policy at the Salt Lake Chamber; she said, “Our population growth is our problem, we’re doing this to ourselves, 80% of our growth is because we’re having children.” She said that many Utahns are hesitant to allow development because they simply misunderstand who will be utilizing the higher density units. 

Mayor John Drew of Providence City says the biggest hurdle to new developments is convincing city councils. He says people looking for housing should go to council meetings and introduce themselves and ask for more development.