Rental Housing Report Finds Record-High Unaffordability

A record number of renters are paying more than half their income for housing, according to a report released today by the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies (JCHS). “America’s Rental Housing: Meeting Challenges, Building on Opportunities” found that one in four renters, or 10.1 million households, spend more than half their income on rent and utilities. JCHS attributed the record-high levels to the recession, which worsened budgets already strained by rising utility costs and declining incomes. The report also determined that while affordable housing demand is stronger than ever, the supply is shrinking. JCHS said that rental housing policy, in addition to alleviating renters’ economic burden, may help address poverty and communities hit hard by the foreclosure crisis.

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