The Housing Gap makes affordable housing impossible

Posted on July 7, 2016


The Housing Gap.

Imagine for a moment.

Imagine your spouse has died, and you’re now a single parent with two children.

Imagine you’re barely making ends meet.

Imagine your spouse had been the breadwinner, but you now struggle to juggle the kids and your job that pays $7.25/hour, the minimum wage.

What would you do?

Questions about preserving affordable housing in your area?  Contact Navigate today.

The Housing Gap

Navigate Affordable Housing Partners participated in the live Housing Gap Twitter chat this afternoon.  Diane Yentel, President and CEO, National Low Income Housing Coalition, hosted and had a lot of good information from the NLIHC’s Housing Gap report.  It says, here in the U.S., the minimum wage ($7.25) simply isn’t enough.  You actually need to earn an average of $20.30/hour to afford a modest, two-bedroom apartment.

For extremely low income (ELI) households like the one we asked you to imagine, the
urgency and need is amplified.  The Gap report says there is a shortage of 7.2 million affordable and available rental units for more than 10-million ELI households.  About 75% of ELI renters are “severely-cost burdened, spending more than half of their income on rent and utilities.”

How many of us can imagine or how many of us know what that’s like?

How much must a man work?

Yentel added for a full-time worker earning the minimum wage, it’s impossible to afford a modest, two-bedroom apartment.  In Alabama, where Navigate is based, you would need to work 63-hours a week to pay for a one-bedroom apartment.  You would not be able to even think about renting an apartment with two bedrooms.

Look at the map below to see how much a minimum wage earner would have to work in each state to afford rent. And then, once again, put yourself in their shoes.Capture

Possible Solutions

According to the NLIHC, many of the programs aimed at helping ELI households are underfunded, but Yentel suggests several changes that could help.

“Simple changes to the mortage interest deduction would result in real benefits – for both low income renters and homeowners,” she tweeted. “MID reform could mean $213bn in revenue over the next decade, which can be used to assist low income renters & homeowners.”

NLIHC is proposing changing the MID from a deduction to a tax credit.  They believe this will make benefits available to lower income homeowners.

Questions about preserving affordable housing in your area?  Contact Navigate today.

Learn More

This conversation about the Housing Gap goes on beyond today’s Twitter chat.  If you’d like more information on the NLIHC’s study, please click this link:

Questions about preserving affordable housing in your area?  Contact Navigate today.

Navigate Affordable Housing Partners is a leading expert in affordable & public housing. We offer consulting and training services nationwide.  Founded in 1980, Navigate Affordable Housing Partners continues to be a thought-leader in the fields of affordable housing and public housing. We operate not only as a Section 8 Performance Based Contract Administrator for HUD but also as an affordable housing consultant for Public Housing Authorities. Our training and customer service is unmatched.

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Ebony Hall
Marketing Coordinator
Ebony has 20 years of experience in communications. She enjoys engaging our audience on social media and with video. Before joining Navigate in 2016, Ebony was a morning show anchor and tv host. She's currently completing her Masters degree in Strategic Public Relations at George Washington University. She finished undergrad at UGA.
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