Apple Inc (NASDAQ: AAPL) announced that it is committing $2.5 billion to help California resolve the housing shortage, which is impacting Californians in many ways.
Californians are struggling to find affordable housing. As a result, some are forced to make the difficult decision to leave and move to another state where it is cheaper to rent or buy a home. Others end up living in their vehicles or worse in shelters.
On Monday, Apple noted that “nearly 30,000 people left San Francisco between April and June this year and the homeownership in the Bay Area is at a seven-year low.”
According to the tech giant, its $2.5 billion commitment will help address the housing availability and affordability in the state. Its pledge includes $1 billion investment fund that will provide the state and other entities with an open line credit to build “very low-to moderate-income housing” and another $1 billion to create a mortgage assistance fund for first-time homebuyers.
Apple is also making available its $300 million land in San Jose for the development of new affordable housing. It will also provide $200 million to support new lower-income housing and help some of the most vulnerable residents in the Bay Area.
In a statement, Apple CEO Tim Cook said, “Before the world knew the name Silicon Valley, and long before we carried technology in our pockets, Apple called this region home, and we feel a profound civic responsibility to ensure it remains a vibrant place where people can live, have a family and contribute to the community.”
“Affordable housing means stability and dignity, opportunity and pride. When these things fall out of reach for too many, we know the course we are on is unsustainable, and Apple is committed to being part of the solution,” he added.
On the other hand, Gov. Gavin Newsom commented, “The sky-high cost of housing — both for homeowners and renters — is the defining quality-of-life concern for millions of families across this state, one that can only be fixed by building more housing. This partnership with Apple will allow the state of California to do just that.”
California needs to build more than 3 million homes by 2025 to ease the severe housing shortage in the state, according to one estimate noted by NPR.
Other tech giants including Facebook (NASDAQ: FB), Google (NASDAQ; GOOG) and Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) also recently announced their plans to invest in the development of affordable housing across the Bay Area.