NLIHC Finds Shortage of Over 200,000 Apartments for NJ’s Lowest Income Renters

Shortage of 7 Million Apartments for the Nation’s Lowest-Income Renters Across All Fifty States

Today, the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) released its annual report, The Gap: A Shortage of Affordable Homes. This report found in the United States, a shortage of seven million affordable and available rental homes for extremely low-income renters, those with household incomes at or below the poverty level or 30% of their area median income.

The report also found that in New Jersey in 2017, there were 298,204 extremely low income renters. At the same time, there is a shortage of 200,619  affordable and available rental units for households at or below extremely low income.

To meet the needs of New Jersey’s low-income renters, there are only 33 affordable and available rental homes for every 100 low income households. Seventy-two percent (72%) of extremely low-income renters households have a severe cost burden.

The report also breaks down the data about the shortage of affordable homes into the following metropolitan areas that include parts of New Jersey – New York City/Newark/Jersey City and Philadelphia/Camden/Wilmington.

The report calls for increasing investments in housing solutions for the lowest-income people such as the national Housing Trust Fund, Housing Choice Vouchers, and public housing; protecting the existing supply of affordable homes; expanding and improving the Low Income Housing Tax Credit so it serves more of the lowest-income families; and implementing a renters’ tax credit that targets low-income renters.

Nationally, this year’s report finds fewer than four rental homes affordable and available for every 10 extremely low-income renter households nationwide. No state or major metropolitan area, including New Jersey, has an adequate supply of rental housing for the poorest renters. As a result of this shortage of affordable homes, 71% of extremely low-income renter households are severely housing cost-burdened, spending more than half of their limited incomes on housing. They account for nearly 73% of all severely cost-burdened renters in the U.S.

The vast majority of extremely low-income renters in the United States are seniors, people with disabilities, or people who are working, enrolled in school, or caring for a young child or for a household member with a disability. Twenty-six percent of extremely low-income renter households are seniors, 22% are a householder with a disability, and 39% are in in the labor force. The wages of those who are working are often too low to afford rent without assistance.

Click here for a full The Gap report and interactive map from NLIHC.

Click here for the NJ data included in the full report.

Click here for more information from NLIHC.