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By Veronica Jacuinde
Wasco Tribune 

Wasco Affordable Housing helping residents since 2001

 

Last updated 3/13/2022 at 3:18pm | View PDF

Veronica Jacuinde | Wasco Tribune

Tenant Maria Chavira

Wasco Affordable Housing, Inc. is a 501(c)3 nonprofit created to provide the community with "decent, safe, and sanitary" housing for persons and families of low and moderate incomes.

The organization has developed 493 affordable housing units in Wasco and Lost Hills.

"The rental rates in Kern County have skyrocketed, making it more difficult for lower-income households to pay rents," Executive Director Antonio Hernandez said.

Hernandez has been with Wasco Affordable Housing since 2006. Before that, he worked for the City of Wasco Housing Authority between 2003-2006, totaling 19 years of affordable housing experience.

"We build high-quality homes that are well maintained. Our developments are all thoroughly kept, and we take great pride in that," he said.

The United States Department of Agriculture subsidizes their projects; tenants pay only 30% of their monthly income as rent. The rents range between $640 - $870 per month for those who do not qualify for rental assistance.

All units come furnished with a stove, refrigerator and washer/dryer hookups. Properties include a playground, community building, and BBQ areas.

"I believe the biggest challenge is the lack of affordable housing available and the need for providing more. Every day people come to us asking for housing. It is hard when we don't have many vacancies because we want to house everyone who asks for it," Hernandez said.

The most important thing to qualify for their housing is submitting an application to be placed on the waiting list. Besides the traditional rental history background check, households must meet state and federal income levels to be eligible. To prove this, documents include pay-stubs, tax returns, if applicable, social security benefits letters, child support income, and disability and welfare verification.

Some of the apartments they have developed are El Mirage on Poplar Ave., Sunset Villa on Palm Ave. and Beckes Street Housing on Spruce Ave. They also developed Rosaleda Village, where farm labor housing complex residents were relocated.

"Every development is a great accomplishment for Wasco Affordable Housing, and we are proud of every one of them. However, I am most proud of our senior development on Central Ave.," Hernandez said. "It was developed in 2008 and was nationally recognized by the USDA."

Veronica Jacuinde | Wasco Tribune

Central Avenue Senior Apartments.

A picture of the development is found at the Washington DC National Office and was also the first USDA farm labor development for seniors built in the United States.

"We are in the preliminary stages of building a new senior development," he added.

"We are successful because we have a strong board that works together as a team to find solutions and generate ideas; and foremost, our support staff. I want the community to know we are here for them and are here to help," Hernandez said.

For anyone wanting an application, has questions regarding housing developments, or needs information on low-income housing, visit their office at 824 E St. or call 661-758-0566.

 

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