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Over 1/4 Georgia households pay more than 30% of income for housing; how Valdosta neighbors get help

Posted at 6:16 PM, Apr 16, 2024
and last updated 2024-04-16 18:16:54-04
  • More than one in four Georgian households spend more than a third of their income on housing.
  • Help is available for neighbors in Valdosta.
  • Watch the video for an inside look at the latest project designed to help with housing needs.


Twenty-nine percent of Georgia households are paying more than a third of their income to keep a roof over their heads. Now, Valdosta is finding ways to help.

“Many of our home owners, including 4 out of our 5 families will actually have lower mortgage payments than their rent payments."

I’m Malia Thomas, your neighborhood reporter in Valdosta, and I’m exploring affordable housing options in the Azalea City.

This is Mike Bourgoin, executive director of Habitat for Humanity. The organization, along with Park Avenue Church, are building homes at Ulmer Avenue to help families in the 40 to 70 percent income threshold for their family size.

The recipient of the home could not be on camera due to recovering from surgery, but Mike tells me their reaction to their new home was, "hugs and kisses and cries that you can't believe."

Habitat recipients will get a mortgage at a fixed rate to help sustain their new homes. They are also a part of a growing need for affordable housing in Valdosta.

According to, the fair market rent for Valdosta was $833 in 2022. Now, the average rent is $1,100.

Valdosta is an entitlement community as well, meaning that we have programs like the Community Development Block Program that helps with housing needs through grants for Housing and Urban Development.

Still, resources are few and far between which is why Habitat and Park Avenue hopes to close that gap. One of the three homes on the Ulmer lot are named after Bettie Bazemore, a neighbor who was dedicated to helping others needing affordable housing.

Her children, Pam and Curt, are happy to see her work continue by helping neighbors get into housing. "We know she's up there smiling right now. Doing files even."

The US HUD has allotted Valdosta over $600,000 in the past years.