The 700,000-square-foot station already has been used by about 17...

The 700,000-square-foot station already has been used by about 17 million people, more than most major commuter railroads in the United States, according to the MTA. Credit: Ed Quinn

Rethink how we view housing-cost burden

A threshold of 30% of gross income defining "cost-burdened" households is, at best, a hazy and general rule of thumb ["LI rent costs tops in NY," News, Feb. 15]. Higher-income households can pay much more and still have substantial disposable income, while lower-income households may qualify for assistance to cap their housing payments and still have little left over for clothing, transportation and routine expenses.

In between, whether renting or owning a home, households earning above the median area income are not eligible for most subsidies.

Other guidelines would give a more complete picture, such as monthly debt payments, savings rate, medical expenses and net income set against housing cost, rather than gross income.

It's time to update the way we measure the burden of housing costs.

Dan Oppenheimer, Hempstead Village

Did MTA forget that some need to sit?

I'm surprised to not see critiques of the Grand Central Madison terminal include the lack of chairs, benches or other "rest stops" for travelers navigating the long hike to the street surface ["Praise and shrugs for Grand Central Madison," News Feb. 25]. Has the Metropolitan Transportation Authority forgotten the seniors, disabled or other travelers who suddenly feel faint and may need to take a break?

George Haber, Jericho

Do your homework when house shopping

I've found of interest the questionable procedures that real estate brokers have used with prospective home buyers ["NYS punishes real estate agents in housing series," News, Feb. 18]. From my own experience 40 years ago, one agent tried to steer us to an area we didn’t want to move to. We told her no thank you and never saw her again.

The bottom line is you need to do your own homework and not rely on brokers. Their job is to show you houses you want to see, where you want to live and in your price range. Today, the internet has so much information available that wasn’t easily accessible 40 years ago.

Arthur Bernstein, Massapequa Park

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