Sample ADU unit This sample ADU unit, located in Ocean Park, Wash., is displayed on Consolidated Community CU’s flyer for its ADU loan program.

For many Americans, the housing system that’s currently in place, which should be designed to provide viable housing options for people of all income levels, flat out isn’t working.

During a recent interview, Larry Ellifritz, president/CEO of the $244 million Consolidated Community Credit Union in Portland, Ore., shared an anecdote that many parents with kids entering the workforce might relate to. He said his college-age son recently told him that after graduating and getting a job, he wouldn’t be able to afford living in Portland. “That was when it first hit home for me, that [affordable housing] is a problem,” Ellifritz said. The average monthly rent for an apartment in Portland (at an average size of 762 square feet) is $1,457, according to

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Natasha Chilingerian

Natasha Chilingerian has worked in the credit union space for over a decade. She joined CU Times as managing editor in 2015 and was promoted to executive editor in 2019. Before that, she served as a communications specialist for Xceed Financial Credit Union (now Kinecta Federal Credit Union) in Los Angeles from 2013-2015, and as a CU Times freelancer from 2011-2013. She has been a professional writer and editor for more than 17 years, specializing in news and lifestyle journalism as well as marketing copywriting for companies in the finance and technology space.

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