GITNUX REPORT 2024

Affordable Housing Crisis Deepens: Millions Struggle to Afford Homes

Inequality deepens as affordable housing crisis escalates, leaving millions struggling to secure shelter.

Author: Jannik Lindner

First published: 7/17/2024

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The Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) has helped create about 3 million affordable housing units since 1986

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The average wait time for public housing in the US is 9 months

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Only 1 in 4 eligible households receive federal rental assistance

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The average monthly housing voucher subsidy in 2021 was $834

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The number of units assisted by project-based Section 8 contracts decreased by 22% between 1996 and 2021

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The number of housing choice vouchers available in the US is capped at 2.3 million

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The average wait time for Section 8 housing vouchers is 2.5 years

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The number of affordable housing units produced annually through the LIHTC program has decreased by 20% since 2016

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In 2021, the average homeless person in the US remained homeless for 197 days

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In 2021, there were about 582,000 people experiencing homelessness on a single night in the US

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The number of unsheltered homeless people in the US increased by 30% between 2015 and 2020

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The number of people in families with children experiencing homelessness decreased by 27% between 2020 and 2021

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The number of people experiencing chronic homelessness increased by 15% between 2019 and 2020

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The average length of stay in emergency shelters is 69 days for individuals and 87 days for families

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The number of people experiencing unsheltered homelessness increased by 7% between 2019 and 2020

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The number of people experiencing homelessness who are over 50 years old has increased by 20% since 2007

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The number of people experiencing homelessness who are employed full-time increased by 22% between 2018 and 2020

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The number of people experiencing homelessness who are over 65 years old is projected to triple by 2030

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In 2021, the US had a shortage of 7.3 million affordable rental homes for extremely low-income renters

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Only 37 affordable and available rental homes exist for every 100 extremely low-income renter households

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The number of affordable housing units in the US decreased by over 4 million between 2011 and 2017

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In 2021, the homeownership rate in the US was 65.5%

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The number of affordable housing units for every 100 extremely low-income households decreased from 37 in 2019 to 36 in 2021

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The number of affordable housing units lost to demolition or conversion exceeds 10,000 per year

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In 2021, the homeownership rate for Black households was 43.4%, compared to 72.1% for white households

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The number of affordable housing units lost to expiring affordability restrictions is about 100,000 per year

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In 2021, the homeownership rate for households aged 35-44 was 61%, down from 69% in 2004

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Nearly 18 million households in the US spend more than 50% of their income on housing

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In 2021, 30% of all US households were cost-burdened, paying more than 30% of their income for housing

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In 2021, 14% of renters were behind on rent payments

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The number of cost-burdened renters in the US increased by 6 million between 2001 and 2021

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In 2021, 49% of renters spent more than 30% of their income on housing

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In 2021, 23% of Black households were severely cost-burdened, compared to 10% of white households

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In 2021, 15% of all US households reported difficulty paying rent or mortgage

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In 2021, the median rent burden for low-income renters was 54%

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In 2021, 58% of low-income renters spent more than half their income on housing

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In 2021, 28% of renters reported making sacrifices to afford housing, such as cutting back on food or healthcare

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In 2021, 38% of all renter households were cost-burdened

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In 2021, 23% of renters moved due to housing costs or eviction

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In 2021, 47% of low-income renters had less than $500 in savings

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In 2021, 17% of renters reported being behind on rent payments

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In 2021, 25% of renters spent more than 50% of their income on housing

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In 2021, 70% of extremely low-income renter households were severely cost-burdened

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In 2021, 44% of Black renters were cost-burdened, compared to 36% of white renters

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In 2021, 25% of renters reported delaying medical care due to housing costs

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The average cost to build a new affordable housing unit in the US is $256,000

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The average cost to rehabilitate an existing affordable housing unit is $110,000

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The average time from application to occupancy for new LIHTC properties is 3.7 years

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The average cost to build a new affordable housing unit in high-cost cities like San Francisco is over $750,000

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The average cost to develop one unit of supportive housing for formerly homeless individuals is $400,000

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The average cost to preserve an existing affordable housing unit is 30-50% less than building a new unit

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In 2021, only 7% of new apartment construction was affordable to households earning 80% of area median income

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The median price of a home in the US increased by 30% between 2019 and 2021

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In 2021, the median rent in the US was $1,295 per month

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In 2021, the median home price in the US was $374,900

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In 2021, the median home price was 5.4 times the median household income

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In 2021, the median rent for a two-bedroom apartment was unaffordable for full-time minimum wage workers in all 50 states

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In 2021, the median home price in San Francisco was 8.5 times the median household income

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In 2021, 30% of all US households were underhoused, living in overcrowded conditions

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The average age of public housing in the US is 40 years

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In 2021, 30% of renters reported difficulty paying for utilities

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The average cost of operating and maintaining a public housing unit is $7,800 per year

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In 2021, 35% of all US households lived in housing that was physically inadequate, overcrowded, or cost-burdened

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The average energy cost burden for low-income households is 8.6% of income, compared to 3% for non-low-income households

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Summary

  • Nearly 18 million households in the US spend more than 50% of their income on housing
  • In 2021, the US had a shortage of 7.3 million affordable rental homes for extremely low-income renters
  • The median price of a home in the US increased by 30% between 2019 and 2021
  • Only 37 affordable and available rental homes exist for every 100 extremely low-income renter households
  • In 2021, 30% of all US households were cost-burdened, paying more than 30% of their income for housing
  • The number of affordable housing units in the US decreased by over 4 million between 2011 and 2017
  • In 2021, the average homeless person in the US remained homeless for 197 days
  • The Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) has helped create about 3 million affordable housing units since 1986
  • In 2021, 14% of renters were behind on rent payments
  • The average wait time for public housing in the US is 9 months
  • In 2021, there were about 582,000 people experiencing homelessness on a single night in the US
  • The number of cost-burdened renters in the US increased by 6 million between 2001 and 2021
  • In 2021, the median rent in the US was $1,295 per month
  • Only 1 in 4 eligible households receive federal rental assistance
  • The number of unsheltered homeless people in the US increased by 30% between 2015 and 2020

<p>Are you feeling house-poor or just homeless at the thought of housing costs exceeding your income? With nearly 18 million households in the US doing a financial limbo and bending over backwards just to cover their roofs, the real estate market seems to be putting a new twist on the higher, the better. From a shortage of 7.3 million affordable rentals for low-income tenants to the median home price doing Olympic-level jumps, its clear that for many, the American Dream is starting to resemble a Netflix subscription – something you wish you could afford without sacrificing basic needs. Lets dive into the maze of eye-popping statistics and see if the housing sector needs a reality check or a makeover.</p>

Government Programs

  • The Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) has helped create about 3 million affordable housing units since 1986
  • The average wait time for public housing in the US is 9 months
  • Only 1 in 4 eligible households receive federal rental assistance
  • The average monthly housing voucher subsidy in 2021 was $834
  • The number of units assisted by project-based Section 8 contracts decreased by 22% between 1996 and 2021
  • The number of housing choice vouchers available in the US is capped at 2.3 million
  • The average wait time for Section 8 housing vouchers is 2.5 years
  • The number of affordable housing units produced annually through the LIHTC program has decreased by 20% since 2016

Interpretation

In a country where the Affordable Housing statistics are as baffling as trying to assemble IKEA furniture without the instructions, it's clear that the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) plays a crucial role, having built about 3 million affordable units since 1986. However, the reality remains harsh for many, as the waiting times for public housing and rental assistance seem to have taken inspiration from a never-ending game of Monopoly. With only 1 in 4 eligible households receiving federal aid, it’s no wonder the housing voucher subsidy in 2021 was a paltry $834. And while the Section 8 program is a lifeline for many, the decreasing number of units and the cap on vouchers make it feel like we're stuck in a housing version of The Hunger Games, where the odds seem anything but in our favor. It seems we need more than just a fresh coat of paint on this affordable housing crisis; we need a whole new blueprint.

Homelessness

  • In 2021, the average homeless person in the US remained homeless for 197 days
  • In 2021, there were about 582,000 people experiencing homelessness on a single night in the US
  • The number of unsheltered homeless people in the US increased by 30% between 2015 and 2020
  • The number of people in families with children experiencing homelessness decreased by 27% between 2020 and 2021
  • The number of people experiencing chronic homelessness increased by 15% between 2019 and 2020
  • The average length of stay in emergency shelters is 69 days for individuals and 87 days for families
  • The number of people experiencing unsheltered homelessness increased by 7% between 2019 and 2020
  • The number of people experiencing homelessness who are over 50 years old has increased by 20% since 2007
  • The number of people experiencing homelessness who are employed full-time increased by 22% between 2018 and 2020
  • The number of people experiencing homelessness who are over 65 years old is projected to triple by 2030

Interpretation

In a nation where the pursuit of the American Dream is championed, the reality on the ground tells a starkly different story. The statistics paint a sobering picture of a society grappling with systemic issues of affordable housing and social support. As the number of homeless individuals fluctuates, it's crucial to recognize the alarming trends, from the increase in unsheltered populations to the growing demographic of older adults facing homelessness. These figures not only reflect a failure in our social safety nets but also serve as a poignant reminder of the urgent need for cohesive and effective solutions to ensure no one is left behind in the land of opportunity.

Housing Availability

  • In 2021, the US had a shortage of 7.3 million affordable rental homes for extremely low-income renters
  • Only 37 affordable and available rental homes exist for every 100 extremely low-income renter households
  • The number of affordable housing units in the US decreased by over 4 million between 2011 and 2017
  • In 2021, the homeownership rate in the US was 65.5%
  • The number of affordable housing units for every 100 extremely low-income households decreased from 37 in 2019 to 36 in 2021
  • The number of affordable housing units lost to demolition or conversion exceeds 10,000 per year
  • In 2021, the homeownership rate for Black households was 43.4%, compared to 72.1% for white households
  • The number of affordable housing units lost to expiring affordability restrictions is about 100,000 per year
  • In 2021, the homeownership rate for households aged 35-44 was 61%, down from 69% in 2004

Interpretation

In a country where homeownership rates fluctuate like a rollercoaster at an amusement park, the stark reality of an affordable housing crisis hits harder than a bad ride. With a shortage of 7.3 million affordable rental homes, it seems like extremely low-income renters are chasing unicorns in a world of scarcity. From disappearing affordable units to disparities in homeownership rates between Black and white households, the housing landscape resembles a puzzle missing crucial pieces. As homes disappear into the abyss due to demolition, conversion, or expiring affordability restrictions, the American Dream starts to look more like a mirage for many. So, as the housing market dazzles with statistics and numbers, the underlying question remains: where do those in need hang their hats in a land of dwindling opportunities?

Housing Cost Burden

  • Nearly 18 million households in the US spend more than 50% of their income on housing
  • In 2021, 30% of all US households were cost-burdened, paying more than 30% of their income for housing
  • In 2021, 14% of renters were behind on rent payments
  • The number of cost-burdened renters in the US increased by 6 million between 2001 and 2021
  • In 2021, 49% of renters spent more than 30% of their income on housing
  • In 2021, 23% of Black households were severely cost-burdened, compared to 10% of white households
  • In 2021, 15% of all US households reported difficulty paying rent or mortgage
  • In 2021, the median rent burden for low-income renters was 54%
  • In 2021, 58% of low-income renters spent more than half their income on housing
  • In 2021, 28% of renters reported making sacrifices to afford housing, such as cutting back on food or healthcare
  • In 2021, 38% of all renter households were cost-burdened
  • In 2021, 23% of renters moved due to housing costs or eviction
  • In 2021, 47% of low-income renters had less than $500 in savings
  • In 2021, 17% of renters reported being behind on rent payments
  • In 2021, 25% of renters spent more than 50% of their income on housing
  • In 2021, 70% of extremely low-income renter households were severely cost-burdened
  • In 2021, 44% of Black renters were cost-burdened, compared to 36% of white renters
  • In 2021, 25% of renters reported delaying medical care due to housing costs

Interpretation

The housing affordability crisis in the US is a tragic yet unsurprising saga of financial acrobatics for millions of households. It seems that for many, balancing the budget involves performing a perpetual high-wire act with their income, while the safety net below is frayed and tattered. The statistics paint a bleak picture: a dance of dollars where rent and mortgage payments hold all the cards. In this intricate financial ballet, sacrifices are made, and compromises are chosen with precision, sometimes at the expense of basic necessities. It's a stark reminder that for too many, the American Dream is cloaked in the suffocating reality of unaffordable housing.

Housing Development

  • The average cost to build a new affordable housing unit in the US is $256,000
  • The average cost to rehabilitate an existing affordable housing unit is $110,000
  • The average time from application to occupancy for new LIHTC properties is 3.7 years
  • The average cost to build a new affordable housing unit in high-cost cities like San Francisco is over $750,000
  • The average cost to develop one unit of supportive housing for formerly homeless individuals is $400,000
  • The average cost to preserve an existing affordable housing unit is 30-50% less than building a new unit
  • In 2021, only 7% of new apartment construction was affordable to households earning 80% of area median income

Interpretation

In the complex world of affordable housing, where numbers dance a costly tango, it appears that the sting of budget constraints is felt nationwide. With the average cost to build a new unit rivaling the price of a luxury sports car, and the lengthy dance from application to occupancy testing the patience of even the most eager tenants, the struggle for accessible housing is undeniably real. Amidst the staggering figures, the silver lining of cost-effective preservation and rehabilitation shines through like a beacon of hope in a sea of financial woes. As we aim to address the urgent need for affordable housing, it seems that a delicate balance between innovation and practicality will be the key to unlocking doors for all those seeking a place to call home. So, as we strive to navigate the maze of statistics and trends, let us remember that behind every number lies a story waiting to be told and a life waiting to be sheltered.

Housing Prices

  • The median price of a home in the US increased by 30% between 2019 and 2021
  • In 2021, the median rent in the US was $1,295 per month
  • In 2021, the median home price in the US was $374,900
  • In 2021, the median home price was 5.4 times the median household income
  • In 2021, the median rent for a two-bedroom apartment was unaffordable for full-time minimum wage workers in all 50 states
  • In 2021, the median home price in San Francisco was 8.5 times the median household income

Interpretation

It seems like the American dream of homeownership is being redefined as the American hustle of rent payments as housing costs continue to skyrocket. With the median home price leaping by 30% in just two years, it's clear that finding affordable housing is like hunting for a unicorn—elusive and mythical. The statistics paint a stark reality where the median home price is dancing 5.4 times higher than the median income, making it feel like a cruel game of financial limbo. And let's not forget San Francisco, where buying a home is like winning the lottery, except the odds are slim when the median price is 8.5 times the median household income. In a world where the roof over our heads is costing us an arm and a leg—literally—perhaps it's time to start thinking outside the four walls of traditional homeownership.

Housing Quality

  • In 2021, 30% of all US households were underhoused, living in overcrowded conditions
  • The average age of public housing in the US is 40 years
  • In 2021, 30% of renters reported difficulty paying for utilities
  • The average cost of operating and maintaining a public housing unit is $7,800 per year
  • In 2021, 35% of all US households lived in housing that was physically inadequate, overcrowded, or cost-burdened
  • The average energy cost burden for low-income households is 8.6% of income, compared to 3% for non-low-income households

Interpretation

In a country where grandiose space exploration projects receive billions in funding, it seems rather ironic that a staggering 30% of American households are cramped in overcrowded conditions. With the average age of public housing reaching 40 years, it's no wonder that 30% of renters struggle to keep the lights on. The cost of maintaining public housing units, at $7,800 per year, is nothing to sneeze at, especially when 35% of families are already shackled by inadequate or excessively expensive housing. Low-income households bear the brunt, spending a hefty 8.6% of their income on energy bills while their wealthier counterparts barely feel a breeze at 3%. As we weigh these statistics, one thing is crystal clear - the concept of home sweet home seems to be turning decidedly sour for far too many in the land of opportunity.

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