|Home | En Español | Contact Us | A to Z|
HUD Archives: News Releases
NEW HUD REPORT SHOWS STRONG ECONOMY WORSENS HOUSING CRISIS FOR POOREST FAMILIES, AS WAITING LISTS FOR HUD HOUSING GROW
Click here for full report.[NOTE: report no longer available on-line. Please call 1-800-245-2691 or visit http://www.huduser.org for information on ordering the report.]
WASHINGTON - The strong economy that has improved the lives of most Americans has hurt some of the poorest families by worsening the crisis-level shortage of affordable housing, according to a new Department of Housing and Urban Development report.
Secretary Andrew Cuomo today released the report - called Waiting In Vain: An Update On America's Housing Crisis. The new report shows that: 1) The time families spend on waiting lists for HUD housing assistance has grown dramatically. 2) Market rents are rising faster than the incomes of poor people. 3) The number of affordable housing units is falling.
The report documents the ongoing shortage of affordable housing in America from 1996 to 1998, updating a report that was based on 1995 statistics.
"The rising economic tide is raising many boats, but it is also drowning some," Cuomo said. "As an unintended consequence of this amazingly strong economy, there is less affordable housing stock and the prices are beyond the reach of those at the bottom of the income spectrum."
The report found that:
Cuomo said the new report shows the need for the $28 billion HUD budget that President Clinton has proposed for Fiscal Year 2000. The proposed budget - $2.5 billion above the current HUD budget - calls for actions to increase the supply of affordable housing. These include the creation of 100,000 new rental assistance vouchers, and steps under the HOME Program to stimulate the creation of about 84,400 affordable housing units.
The report indicates that the number of families with crisis-level housing needs - called "worst case needs" - remains at or near 5.3 million, the same level found in 1995. The families earn less than 50 percent of the area median income and either pay over half their incomes for rent, live in severely substandard housing, or both.
The report says: "At a time of unprecedented prosperity for so many, islands of despair remain. The very strength of our economy is forcing the poorest renters to compete for a shrinking pool of affordable units. With nowhere else to turn, millions of families with worst case housing needs join lists for HUD-assisted housing and are left waiting in vain."
Content Archived: January 20, 2009