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Our Home, Our Future: Liv Franson

Voices from our Salisbury community about the housing we need for a healthy, vibrant future

Liv Franson is a hometown girl. She grew up here and went to Salisbury Central School. For the past 22 years Liv has lived in our community and has supported herself with a number of steady housekeeping jobs. As happens for many women, when it was necessary for her to leave her longtime relationship she found herself desperate to find a place to live that provided a stable, secure home for her and her children. Luckily her mom told her about the new apartments at Sarum Village in Salisbury. 

She was initially concerned about living there knowing the stigma attached to “Affordable Housing.” Out of necessity she put her concerns aside and filled out the lengthy application. After Connecticut Real Estate Management (CREM) thoroughly checked out her background, she was relieved when they approved her for a three-bedroom apartment.

Now she sees that her fears were completely unfounded. She says, “the apartment is the nicest place we have ever lived.” With her monthly rent under $1,000, she does not have to take on more jobs, is free from the constant stress of making ends meet and is able to spend more time with her children. The kids are doing well, love the schools and are happy to be near their friends. 

Liv finds Sarum Village to be a very nice neighborhood with a diverse mix of people. As she’s gotten to know many of her neighbors, she says, “There is a group of senior women who are longtime residents and friends, single moms like me, a single dad, a couple of young men who grew up in Salisbury and some single men and women.” 

Liv says she is “unaware of any problems with crime or drugs.” A few years ago our state trooper said that, “There are no more issues with local affordable housing residents than with the community as a whole.” Liv feels very lucky to live in Sarum Village since she knows that the need for affordable rentals has only increased since COVID caused a jump in real estate values and landlords have responded by evicting tenants in order to sell their properties. 

Diverse housing options, especially affordable rentals, are critical if we are to enable young families to live here. Since March of 2020, the median home value in Salisbury has increased 47%. Without affordable housing, where will teachers, health care workers, supermarket employees, landscapers, restaurant workers, hairdressers, housekeepers, town employees, retirees who want to downsize, and other full-time residents live? The issue affects the future of our town for weekenders and full-time residents alike.

Litchfield and Salisbury: Average increase of 41 percent https://www.ctinsider.com/realestate/article/ct-zip-codes-home-prices-co... Zillow - typical home value for Salisbury https://www.zillow.com/salisbury-ct/home-values/ March 2020 – May 2022 +47% - $517,000 - $759,000 The median listing home price in Salisbury, CT was $825,000 in March 2022 https://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-search/Salisbury_CT/overview https://www.movoto.com/salisbury-ct/market-trends/ Salisbury Market Trends For Single Family Homes – Median list price $2,215,000 in May 2022; condos or town homes $487,500

Mary Close Oppenheimer is a local artist who has been part of the Lakeville/Salisbury community for 30 years.

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