Not in My Back Yard

In El Segundo there’s a great (although kinda crazy) facebook
page for local residents. It’s a private group called The El Segundo Parents
Network. It’s crazy because you get people complaining about mindless shit,
like dogs poopin on lawns or the guy in the green BWM that runs stops signs.
But it’s also a good resource to find out timely info about the city, rentals,
schools, etc…

A week ago a local real estate agent posted a question about
building mixed use space (live/work/commercial) east of sepulveda. Currently
there is no residential space east of El Segundo. In the past couple years
we have seen the growth of high end commercial spaces on the east side of town
and it’s an area where there is ample space for development.

The question
that was proposed also mentioned “ that a part of the units are leased to lower or middle income
families. Giving preference to existing ES residence. To offset the lower
rents, the city could allow for less setbacks or larger densities.”

 1.
That’s a fantasy and probably against the law.

2.
People freaked the fuck out

 The
first portion of the thread was people concerned that this realtor bumped his
head or his facebook page was hacked. Genuine concern, as in let’s call the
police and/or his family. Once the verified that he was alive, well and did in
fact post this click-baity question people started weighing in.

In
typical Southern
California
fashion there was a lot of “Not in My Back Yard” comments. Everyone complains
about rising real estate prices and rents, the problem of homelessness, lack of
affordable housing but no one wants it build in their neighborhood. “You’ll
ruin the small town charm” “Just look at what happened to Manhattan Beach”

 Then
there were comments about the tax revenue, social services and school districts.
Genuineconcerns for a made up, never gonna happen proposal. And by never gonna
happen I mean give local residents preferential and lower cost treatment.

 But
then people latched on to the affordable…and give residents preferential
treatment
and you got to read

1. How
little people know about real estate and economics

2. How
scared a lot of people are

3. How prevalent
the “Not in My Backyard” mentality is

 There
were comments about not being able to qualify for a rental unit that was more
than 30% of their income, despite having a glowing rental history and credit
score.

 Although
this is kinda normal for Southern California let’s look at how fucked up
spending 30% of your PRE-TAX income is.

You
make $100K

Your after tax pay is about $70K (and I’m being generous)

Your
monthly net is $5833

30% of
$100K on a monthly basis is $2500

 That’s
the MAX you should be spending on rent. In El Segundo that’s might get you a three
bedroom apartment on Imperial but most likely just a two bedroom. Look at the
math your rent is almost HALF of your paycheck.

Childcare
– $700
Food – $1000
Utilities – $300
Car/Insurance/Gas
– $500
Credit
card bill – $200 

You now
only have $633/month left. We haven’t talked about other insurance costs, the
co-pay for the doctor visit, the new shoes because your six year old keeps
growing, the dance class costs, date night, retirement, emergency savings….

 The
math is bad. You make $100K and you are living paycheck to paycheck.

Let’s
pretend you miss a paycheck…The house of cards falls and what’s the biggest
outlay, your rent. Next thing you know you are behind, get evicted and have
little to no savings. You don’t have the money for a new deposit….

 If you
have a family you can not afford to live in El Segundo. Sad but true. So where
does a person go to get a good public education, good neighborhood, low crime? the reality is you go inland or parts of simi valley.

 People
are rightfully scared. So are the people that live in Inglewood and see developers, real estate
agents and other people looking to capitalize on the coming gentrification.

Does all of this seem normal to you? Yeah it’s common as we have seen it in some form for the past ~15 years but it’s far from normal. 

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