Chattanooga housing fair draws a large crowd
People started lining up two hours before the "Housing Fair" at the Chattanooga Housing Authority on Thursday. They got in line early in hopes that their name would be higher on the waitlist for affordable housing.
All hope to get a new home.
"Because I'm homeless, and I'm sick and I got put out today," said Mildred Taylor.
"Because I heard there was a housing fair and it would be easier for us, but it's been pretty hard finding somewhere to stay," said Destiny Edmondson.
"It's hard, you know in the time frame that I have been here it's been pretty hard to find housing," said Cheron Jenkins.
Mildred Taylor is elderly and disabled, she doesn't feel like there's anyone out there that will help her.
"No I don't, I haven't gotten help so far," said Taylor. "But everybody is saying they got this help for the disabled and the elderly and the handicap and ain't nobody help at all."
Destiny Edmondson is frustrated as new luxury apartment complexes keeping going up within the city.
"I rolled by one the other day, well I know I won't be able to get that one it's too high, it's too pretty, or it's going to be too high for a one-bedroom," said Edmondson.
Cheron Jenkins just relocated to Chattanooga and is looking for a new place to live.
"It's hard, you know in the time frame that I have been here it's been pretty hard to find housing," said Jenkins.
These women are hoping to fill vacancies at East Lake, College Hill Courts, and Emma Wheeler Homes.
Mike Sabin with the Chattanooga Housing Authority said right now there are 49 vacancies at College Hill with 16 getting renovated by maintenance crews. At East Lake 27 units are ready, and six that need refurbishment, at Emma Wheeler there are 11 units ready to go and 19 that need refurbishment.
He said these numbers are constantly changing because new apartments are ready to go rapidly, and the vacancies come from stricter rent policies.
Depending on which apartment complex, hundreds could be on the waiting list.
437 people are on the waiting list for a one-bedroom at East Lake Courts.
Taylor said she hopes they can help her.
"Because if I'm out on the street I'm going to die," said Taylor.
Sabin said that the housing fair was only a beginning to the process. If people who came to the fair qualified, they will then be invited to an orientation to continue to the next steps of the process.