A Housing Choice Voucher Most Effective Tool for Reducing Homelessness and Housing Instability
The Housing Choice Voucher Program is the nation’s largest rental assistance program. Across the country, more than 5 million people in 2.2 million low-income households use vouchers.
In New Jersey, people in 70,000 households use a voucher to afford decent, privately owned housing. 63% of these households include seniors, children or people with disabilities. The total number of people in subsidized housing in NJ totals 165,800.
CBPP reports that, three out of four low-income New Jersey households pay too much for rent and do not receive a voucher or other federal rental assistance due to limited funding.
- 13% of voucher recipients are elderly; Vouchers help 20,700 of New Jersey’s seniors afford decent, modest housing and age in place.
- 20% of voucher recipients are disabled; Vouchers enable 33,400 people with disabilities in New Jersey to live independently in their home communities.
- 67% of voucher recipients are families with children; 29,300 families with 65,000 children in New Jersey use a voucher to keep a roof over their heads.
We know that vouchers are the key to ending homelessness, strengthening families and communities, and expanding opportunities for children.
The fact sheets provide the latest information on voucher recipients, including:
- demographic breakdowns;
- where vouchers are used across urban, suburban, and rural areas;
- the total federal dollars going to landlords who take vouchers; and
- the potential loss of vouchers if Congress does not increase renewal funding sufficiently to cover rising rents.
In an August 9, 2017 Off the Charts blog post, CBPP’s Alicia Mazzare writes,
“Vouchers are the most effective tool for reducing homelessness and housing instability, numerous studies show. Children in homeless families that receive housing vouchers change schools less often and are 42 percent less likely to be separated from their families and placed into foster care. Their families are also 20 percent less likely to be food insecure (having inadequate access to food at some point during the year) and 34 percent less likely to experience domestic violence.”
The CBPP fact sheet highlights how vouchers fight homelessness and increase opportunities for children in each state.
This fact sheet includes recent data on the unmet need for rental assistance in a state, including the number of homeless people and children without stable housing.