Our Mission

Care Association plans, develops, and implements innovative strategies to alleviate economic burdens on lower- and middle-income households.  We serve households in the United States that pay more than 30% of their gross income on housing or are transient because of lack of affordable housing.

Our primary program is focused on developing truly affordable homes.  Affordability can be achieved by building small, using donated or second-hand materials, and using sweat equity from volunteers and prospective residents.  We are also exploring the use of innovative or unconventional building methods.  Many conventional “affordable housing” plans include subsidies to cover the “market rates” for vacancies.  But the real demand is for housing at costs that households in lower income brackets can afford.  With property development, we aim to create homes that a worker earning minimum wage can afford.

By providing housing, we also promote people’s mental health.  Our secondary program supports mental wellness with psychoeducation and other mental health support.

Primary Program

Truly Affordable Housing

Too many Americans pay more than the national standard of 30% of gross income on housing costs: including rent or mortgage, maintenance and utilities.   One out of 11 households are cost-burdened with housing costs that are 50% or more of their income (Source: Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University).  Affordable housing allows residents to reallocate funds toward other necessities, such as child care, education, healthcare, clothing, and food.  Reducing housing costs also increases disposable income, which raises spending power and strengthens the economy.  Truly affordable housing won’t rely on government subsidies.

After efforts to connect people with vacant units to potential tenants, guide people toward self-sufficiency, and work with other nonprofits, we decided tackle the problem of availability of affordable homes by building them.

Developing Affordability

In 2018, the planning department of Sonoma County in Northern California enacted a provision called the Cottage Housing Development provision to allow construction of multiple small units on a single residential lot.  This provision allows tiny houses to be built on foundations, which presents an opportunity to create housing at a relatively low cost. 

In Sonoma County, known for its pinot noir, cabernet sauvignon, and zinfandel grapes, there is a 10-year waiting list for affordable homes.  This waiting list was worsened by the Tubbs Fire in 2017.  For-profit developers are not meeting the need.

The goal Care Association’s primary program is work toward meeting the need as a nonprofit real estate developer.

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