Next Steps for the Rural Housing Network

Housing Virginia has wrapped up the rural housing provider discussion forums around the state, carried out in partnership with local Realtors® Associations, and has begun work on a final report.


This report, which will be released at the Governor’s Housing Conference in November, tracks the changes in a range of data points to present the new picture of rural housing in Virginia. The report also includes an analysis of the needs and gaps identified by housing providers in each region. Finally, there will also be policy recommendations for how to best address these needs and gaps, as well as a compendium of best practices from around the country.


You can find the preliminary research, including the results of our provider needs and gaps survey and demographic/housing data for each region on our Rural Housing Initiative page. This data will be fine-tuned and presented in the report alongside a breakdown of the group discussions we had with service and housing providers around the state.


We are already seeing trends of continued outmigration from the Southwest corner of the state, as well as a rise in isolated seniors statewide. There have also been dramatic increases in the number of seniors still making mortgage payments, as well as those who are rent or mortgage burdened.


Our discussions with providers raised a number of topics, including the growing aging population and their housing needs, the need for more affordable rental housing, condition of the existing housing stock, land use/zoning restrictions, and more.


If you are planning to attend the Governor’s Housing Conference, be sure to stop by our session on Thursday morning titled “Housing Trends in Rural Virginia: Policy Options to Address the Needs for the Next Decade” to hear a panel discussion about this report. We will also hold a pre-conference session on Wednesday afternoon to gather rural providers and begin the next steps of our initiative – stay tuned for more information.