Virginia’s Housing in 10 Graphics

1. Most lower income Virginians struggle to pay for their homes. A household is housing cost burdened when it spends more than 30% of its annual income on housing. Nearly one-third of all renters and homeowners in Virginia are housing cost burdened. The vast majority of extremely low income households (making less than 30% of the area median income) and very low income households (less than 50% AMI) are housing cost burdened. Source: CHAS Data, 2011-2015 American Community Survey. 2. Wages are not keeping up with rising rents. Many renters experience housing cost burden because wage growth has not kept up with the cost of rent and other housing costs. Between 2005 and 2015, the median renter wage in Virginia increased by only 4%, yet the median gross rent for the state increased by 15%. Source: Housing Virginia Sourcebook


3. Most low-income Virginians do not receive any housing assistance. About 75% of very low and extremely low income households in Virginia do not receive any form of housing subsidy. Out of every 100 very and extremely low income households, 9 live in Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) assisted apartments, 9 occupy public housing or project-based Section 8 homes, 8 hold Section 8 vouchers, and 1 receives USDA-RD assistance. Source: HUD, VHDA, USDA-RD


6. Minorities still face a large homeownership gap. African American and Latino families have historically faced high barriers to homeownership opportunity. In Virginia, white families are still 1.5 times as likely to own their own home than minority families. Source: CHAS Data, 2010-2014 American Community Survey, Virginia

7. The housing shortage is most acute for ELI households. For the nearly 300,000 Virginia families earning less than 30% of area median income, finding available affordable housing is nearly impossible. There are only 37 affordable homes available for every 100 extremely low income households. Source: NLIHC Gap Report 2017. 8. The number of homeless students has almost doubled in 10 years. The number of homeless persons on a given night in Virginia has declined 31% since the peak in 2010. At the same time, the number of documented homeless students enrolled in Virginia schools has increased 88% since 2006. While a number of strategies to combat chronic homelessness have seen success in Virginia, a large number of hidden homeless children face housing insecurity, which affects their academic performance and overall well-being. Source: Project Hope Virginia. 9. The need for affordable senior housing is urgent and growing. Across the state, half of senior renters experience housing cost burden. 40% of seniors live alone, shouldering housing costs independently. Of the 535,000 seniors who own homes and have a mortgage, 1 in 4 are housing cost burdened. Source: CHAS Data, 2011-2015 American Community Survey

10. Housing cost burden affects Virginians all across the state. In 52 of Virginia's counties and cities, housing costs are unaffordable to over 30% of families. While high rents and home prices drive housing cost burden in urban areas, many rural regions struggle with housing affordability due to low wages and higher unemployment. Source: 2011-2015 American Community Survey