The New York Times
reports that, as more people face foreclosure and affordable housing continues to be a problem for the working poor, more of an effort is being to help those groups help each other out. Community organizations are offering services to help boarders find struggling homeowners in need of a few hundred extra dollars per month to make mortgage payments.
Of course it's not ideal for homeowners -- few people get excited at the prospect of sharing their homes with a stranger -- but this is exactly the right kind of solution to the foreclosure crisis. No handouts and no bailouts: just people who have needs working together to reach an agreement that benefits both parties.
The opportunities for this are quite good. With foreclosures soaring nationwide, people are getting kicked out of their homes, and those homes are sitting empty. Banks don't rent out their foreclosures and this is causing, paradoxically, a lack of affordable housing in the face of plummeting property values.
And, experts say, living with someone else, especially in times of financial stress, can be tremendously rewarding. So if you have an extra bedroom and you're short on cash, give some thought to taking on a boarder.