April 22, 2016

‘Cost of Rentals in Florida Isn’t So Sunny’

By: York Real Estate Group

Last week we took a look at Federal building regulations and their impact on the construction of low-income rental housing. “The Gap: The Affordable Housing Gap Analysis 2016,” a new report just issued by the national Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC), shows just how serious the shortage is right here at home.

Florida is currently fifth in the nation for the number of available housing units for ELI (extremely low-income—defined as the bottom 30% in their communities) households, with only 22 affordable rentals available per 100 residents, compared to the U.S. average of 31. The dubious top five distinction is shared by Nevada with only 17 per 100 ELI households, and Alaska, Arizona, and California with 21/100 each. That all adds up to a shortfall of over 7,000,000 affordable units nationwide.

The NLIHC is calling for greater Federal investment in low-income housing programs, as well as the easing of regulations. According to Andrew Aurand, VP of research at NLIHC, the new report "reveals an alarming reality about housing for extremely low income households. What is frustrating is the lack of timely action to address the issue. Millions of people in America are living in unaffordable rental homes. They are forced to cut their spending on food, transportation and health to pay rent."

Three-quarters of ELI renters currently spend more than half their income on housing. This impacts our state’s economy at large. More directly, a healthy housing market means having affordable options available for those at every income level. Let’s hope the shortage eases soon.