Multnomah County is trying an out-of-the-box approach to homelessness that it hopes might just be creative enough to work: The county will pay up to $75,000 to build an ADU, or granny-flat, in your backyard if you agree to let a homeless family live there rent-free for five years.   

County Chair Deborah Kafoury explained the program to “All Things Considered” host Kate Davidson. She said the Portland region’s housing crunch requires new approaches.  

“We have a housing crisis in our community,” Kafoury said. “It’s really incumbent upon us to try any means possible, try different ideas, creative solutions to get people off the streets and out of shelters and into housing.”  

So far, almost 700 people have expressed interest in the program.  

“I believe there’s this pent-up energy in our community,” Kafoury said. “They see the need, and people want to help.”  

Use the above audio player to listen to the entire conversation.