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Housing Shortage, South Shore and Cape


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“How Big is the Housing Shortage on the South Shore and the Cape”

Since, Cape Cod is a desirable location to live and vacation, investors and non-residents are buying existing year-round properties on and on. After purchase they convert those properties into short-term rentals or off and on use for their own living. This has led to decrement of year-round housing properties as the prices of housing units is out of the reach of Cape Cod and South Shore residents.

According to the South Shore Chamber Study, South Shore will require approx. 45,000 housing units, condominiums, apartments and single-family homes by the year 2030- equal to 13 times the no. of homes at The Pine hills in Plymouth or 10 times the number of homes planned for Union Print (a former Weymouth Air Base). This 4X is easily attainable if managed well by us.

Being said that, basic objective behind this back up plan is to create quite a number of housing options that will both attract the visitors and propel the future economy of both Cape Cod and South Shore. Nevertheless, the housing shortage is correspondent to high property values that forced the young adults and their families to leave Cape Cod.

 ü Purchasing Power of Locals vs. Second Home Buyers

 One of the main reasons is that affluent sightseers are sucking the healthy and joyful Cape Cod living. They buy second homes on Cape which does not augur well for its own residents and has thrust out kinsfolk vacation homes demand. There is great purchasing power of second home owners than locals, short-term rental market that is incorporated by emergence of Airbnb-type transactions.

ü Seasonal Rental Market

 In addition to that, restaurant workers and shop owners keep the tourist interest and regular visit high that is raising the economy but putting Cape on housing shortage crisis. As a result of this, inefficient seasonal market is embossed where people rent or own the wrong style or size home for their time being needs.

 ü Rising Costs of House hurt Family Budgets

 For families, who are struggling to get by in places are struggling hardly to sync out with typical wages and salaries. As a consequence of this, individuals who spend more than half of their earning are less likely to save money for future.

ü Impact on Local Economy

 Current lack of year-round housing options has become a major hinderance to economic growth, business expansion, and put up potential regional impact on healthcare, goods prices, and municipalities.

 ü Outdated Zoning

Undoubtedly, housing shortage is largely influenced by outdated zoning. There is lack of housing diversity where there are only single-family residential zoning districts. In view of this, there is sprawling infrastructure and futile development pattern that restricts the South Shore and Cape Cod residents to build new home. Current zoning regulations create an inverse relationship between second homes and year-round homes. There is local building restriction. So, there is need of developing higher density housing with notable exceptions. If regular folks are making a mind of holding their homes after they move, they should hire RPM Associate property managers.

What Can We Do – Recommendations?

Cape Cod stands at the edge of economic precipice driven largely by housing. But what if housing shortage encounters your region. This is an alarming enigma that needs to be planned and resolved by taking appropriate measures immediately. Only then, it will be in the well-being of South Shore and Cape Cod residents.

  • As mentioned previously, it is suspected, over the next eight years, demand for vacation homes is expected to grow by 6%, or twice as fast as year-round units. And this surge will continue to have a long-lasting effect on Cape Cod’s housing market for next decades. So, build more homes.
  • Building more houses would lessen the inventory crisis of South Shore and Cape Cod. But that’s an unfortunate case with low paid workers of South Shore and Cape Cod who won’t be able to build home due to high prices. So proper planning and traditional approach to affordable housing must be administered otherwise this region will continue its current trajectory go backward.
  • Housing shortage can’t be resolved overnight as no single agency, community or business can solve this alone. Presently, there are 61,000 second homes on South Shore and Cape, where 74 % are left vacant for most of the year. If you are looking for those vacation properties to move then RPM Associate will help you get those owners to rent to a year-round tenant.
  • Incentivize the second home owners to rent year-round which will reduce the housing gap. Or unlocking of some portion of these units would potentially add house units for local residents. If high-end vacation home owners are looking for holding of their home after they move, they should consult with RPM Associate for Vacation property management Cape Cod service. For a note, due to high use and vacationer’s demand, the maintenance cost is significantly increased with short-term rental projects. However, the annual rental arrangement offers consistent earning and therefore, less costs to maintain the property.
  • Create More accessory dwelling units by following the environmental and aesthetic standards. Thus, making it easier for homeowners to build year-round accessory rental units that fits into the design of existing home and community requirement i.e.; carriage house, in-law apartment etc.
  • Update Zoning and Plan Long-term structural planning with development of more housing units per acre. Plan for the growth in such a way that will give South Shore and Cape Cod residents maximum benefits and less harm.


If We Don’t Take Actions

 Low income families suffer first. If we do nothing, it will not only they          who will suffer. Rather, every homeowner will lack in essential services and consumers choice. Moreover, regional competitiveness will also decrease. We will have unhealthy rental market with high prices. There will be lack of housing choice leads to market. While short-term rentals over supply will make the situation worse.

A lot more to do in a long run to keep the liveliness of our region. Build more homes to entice diverse population to live here


We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.

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