Thursday, February 16, 2012

New NLIHC Report on Declining Affordable AND Available Rental Housing Supply; Oregon Worse Than National Average.

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NLIHC has published a new HIGHLY RECOMMENDED Housing Spotlight report HERE showing by state and key income levels the percentages of rental units that are 
  1. Affordable and,
  2. Affordable AND available.

My Observations:
  1. A significant share of rental units with rents affordable to lower income renters are NOT available to them because other renters with higher incomes already live in the unit. 
  2. At the national level, the NLIHC data show that for every 100 extremely low income renter households (<30% MFI) there was a supply of 56 units that had rents that were affordable to those renters. However, the data shows that only 30 of these affordable units were actually available to these extremely low income renters because 26 otherwise affordable units are occupied by higher income renters.
  3. In Oregon the problem is even more pronounced. NLIHC estimates that there was a supply of 42 affordable rental units for every 100 extremely low income renter households. However, because 20 of these affordable units were occupied by higher income renters, only 22 of these units remain both affordable AND available to extremely low income renters.
  4. The affordable and available rental housing supply gap drops as incomes increase. Nationally, at 80% MFI the estimate is that there were 98 affordable AND available units for every 100 renters at that income level, while in Oregon the estimate is that there were 95 rental units affordable and available to every 100 rental families at 80% of MFI. 
  5. When the supply of affordable and available housing is less than the need, families end up spending more than 30% of their income for rent (AKA, they are "Cost Burdened"; the NLIHC report shows the rate of "severe cost burden", households paying more than 50% of their income for rent).
  6. Nationally, 76% of extremely low income renters have a severe cost burden; Oregon is worse than the national average with 81% of extremely low income renters paying more than 50% of their income for rent. 
  7. Project Based Rental Assistance and income restricted housing is a key way to solve the housing affordability problem for low income renters as it insures that this supply of affordable units remain available to lower income families.
  8. Vouchers help solve the "affordablity" problem. However, unless project based, they cannot solve the affordable and available affordable housing supply problem as they can only be used if a unit is available.
A blog post HERE from NLIHC has more background on this report. 

Originally created and posted on the Oregon Housing Blog.

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