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October 23, 2014

Low-income Renters Struggle to Find Affordable Housing

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Low-income Renters Struggle to Find Affordable Housing

A study by the National Low Income Housing Coalition has found that for every 100 families considered "extremely low income," there are only 30 affordable units available to rent nationwide. "Extremely low income" renters are considered those who earn less than 30 percent of the median income in the metro area which they live. 

The number of extremely low income renters has grown in recent years. In 2010, the number swelled to 9.8 million -- nearly a quarter of all renters nationwide.  

"What we’ve seen is a decline in the home ownership rate since 2008, and we’ve seen rent being pushed up," pushing rent out of each for more low income people, says Sheila Crowley, NHLIHC chief executive. 

The problem appears to be the most evident where the largest gaps exist between the rich and poor, such as in states like Arizona, California, Florida, Michigan, Nevada, Oregon, Texas, and Utah, according to the study. 

“There’s no doubt that there’s a gap, and it’s significant, and it’s getting worse,” said Becky Koepnick, an adviser to HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan. 

The NLIHC has called for more affordable rentals to meet the growing demands of low-income families. 

Source: “Lowest-Income Renters Left Behind in Housing Crisis,” The Wall Street Journal (Feb. 15, 2012)

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