Community Development, Reports and Publications

New Report: Low-Income Households Face Severe Shortage of Affordable Housing

National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC)
 

A new report by the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) - The Gap: The Affordable Housing Gap Analysis, 2016 - finds a severe lack of rental units that are affordable for extremely low-income (ELI) and deeply low-income (DLI) households. ELI and DLI households are defined as households with income at or below 30% and 15% of the area median income (AMI), respectively. The shortage for ELI households is over 7 million units, while the shortage for DLI households is over 3 million. The report also includes state/metro data in Appendix A on the availability of affordable units to households at various AMI levels (15% - 80%) as well as the percentage of households at various AMI levels who suffer from severe housing cost burden (spending more than half of income on rent and utilities).
 
Nationally, there are only 31 affordable and available rental units for every 100 ELI renter households. Seventy-five percent of these households are severely cost-burdened. The statistics are even worse for DLI households. There are 17 affordable and available rental units per 100 DLI households. Ninety percent of these households are severely cost-burdened.
 
Connecticut’s numbers are better than the nationwide numbers, but they are still low. For those at or below 30% of AMI, Connecticut has 36 affordable and available units per 100 households. For those at or below 15% of AMI, Connecticut has 23 affordable and available units per 100 households. In the Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford metropolitan area, 35 units are affordable and available for every 100 households at or below 30% of AMI and there are 21 affordable and available units for every 100 households at or below 15% of AMI. 
 
Not surprisingly, the lack of affordable and available rental units for low income groups results in a disproportionately high percentage of these households that experience severe housing cost burden. In Connecticut, 68% of households with incomes at or below 30% of AMI experience severe housing cost burden. Of those households at or below 15% of AMI, 82% of them experience severe housing cost burden. 

These numbers are comparable to those of the Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford metropolitan area. Here, 70% of those households with incomes at or below 30% of AMI experience severe housing cost burden. Of those households at or below 15% of AMI, 83% of them experience severe housing cost burden.
 
The report recommends shrinking the gap between the number of households in specific income groups and the number of rental units that are both affordable and available by expanding the National Housing Trust Fund (NHTF). This funding dedicated to increasing the amount of affordable housing available to low-income households.
 
Click here to view the full report. 

 
 

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