Home Economy What is your living situation? We want to hear from you.

What is your living situation? We want to hear from you.

by SuperiorInvest

“No society can be fully understood without the residences of its members.”

I have that quote (from “Crabgrass Frontier,” the seminal history of American suburbia) taped to a wall behind my desk. It sums up why I love covering housing for The New York Times and never seem to run out of things to write about. Housing is everything. It's where we live and raise our families. It is the largest store of wealth for most people. Whether you own, rent, or sleep outside, where you tilt your head defines much of your existence.

In recent decades, and especially since the pandemic, housing has gone from a symbol of American strength to an everyday crisis. Aspiring homeowners are becoming forever renters. People live in increasingly overcrowded homes, the supply of illegal housing has increased and homeless encampments have multiplied. People are fleeing expensive states in search of cheaper states, which in turn has created housing problems in the cities where they end up.

There have also been new opportunities: the rise of home offices has allowed many people to relocate to cheaper real estate markets and has prompted several families to leave their 9-to-5 jobs and redevelop properties or become homeowners. In California and elsewhere, the legalization of backyard homes has inspired several homeowners to become developers by creating small rental units on their properties.

Over the past few years, I've covered virtually every aspect of America's housing crisis, from the public officials trying to address it in statehouses to the people living with its consequences. I write about both tenants and landlords, developers and environmentalists, public and private housing, even an attempt to build a new city from scratch.

My stories vary in themes and come from all over the country, but the common thread is that they are rooted in the stories of the people and places that create them. That's why I want to know about you. I want to know what types of housing pressures you are facing and how they have affected your life, your family, your friends, and your community. And I want to know what stories or topics you think need more attention. The articles I write are inspired by the stories people tell me.

I read all the submissions. I also always reach out to ask more questions and make sure I have my details correct before posting anything. I will not publish anything without your explicit permission and I will not use your contact information for any other purpose or share it outside of the newsroom. If you would like to submit information anonymously, please visit our tips page.

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