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Access to a Safe, Comfortable, and Stable Place to Call Home
Should be a Public Policy Priority

Specific reasons vary, but research shows that people become homeless because they cannot find housing that they can afford. Low income households pay nearly 80 percent of their income on rent which leaves very little for other necessities such as nutritious food, clothing, transportation, and medical care. Low income, unassisted households often face housing instability, threats of eviction, poor housing conditions, and are at great risk of homelessness.

Additionally, for those families facing the most complex challenges, housing alone may not suffice–in order to ensure the stability of the most fragile, the combination of housing plus support services may be necessary to insure individuals and families live stable and healthy lives.

AFFORDABLE HOUSING

According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, HOUSING IS CONSIDERED “AFFORDABLE” IF A FAMILY SPENDS NO MORE THAN 30 PERCENT OF THEIR INCOME TO LIVE THERE. 

Families who pay more than 30 percent of their income are considered cost burdened and may have difficulty affording necessities such a s food, clothing, transportation, and medical care.

An estimated 12 million renter and homeowner households now pay more than 50 percent of their annual incomes for housing. A family with one full-time worker earning minimum wage cannot afford the fair-market for a two-bedroom apartment anywhere in the United States.

Supportive Housing

SUPPORTIVE HOUSING

Supportive housing is housing plus support. It is a cost-effective way to help people live more stable, productive lives and works well for those who face the most complex challenges–individuals and families at-risk of homelessness who also have very low incomes, serious persistent issues that may include addiction or alcoholism, mental health, HIV/AIDS, or other serious challenges.

Supportive housing can be coupled with with job training, life skills training, alcohol and drug abuse programs, education, and case management for those in need of assistance.

Supportive housing transforms the lives of homeless people living with mental illness, veterans, high-risk families, youth aging out of foster care, and even grandparents.

THE LACK OF AFFORDABLE AND SUPPORTIVE HOUSING CANNOT BE OVERCOME BY THE HOMELESS ASSISTANCE SYSTEM.  COMMUNITIES, STATES, AND THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT NEED TO INVEST IN THESE HOUSING SOLUTIONS SO THAT ALL INDIVIDUALS AND FAMILIES ARE ABLE TO OBTAIN AND MAINTAIN HOUSING.

Albany Housing Gap: 9,453 Units

Albany County has a 13.7% poverty rate according to the New York State Community Action Association’s 2015 Poverty Profile Report. There are approximately 13,799 extremely low income renter households with only 4,346 adequate, affordable, and available units. This means that Albany County needs to invest in at least 9,453 units to ensure each family in Albany has a safe, comfortable, stable place to call home.

Schenectady Housing Gap: 5,660 Units

Schenectady County has a 13.1% poverty rate according to the New York State Community Action Association’s 2015 Poverty Profile Report. There are approximately 7,401 extremely low income renter households with only 1,741 adequate, affordable, and available units. This means that Schenectady County needs to invest in at least 5,660 units to ensure each family in Schenectady has a safe, comfortable, stable place to call home.

Rensselaer Housing Gap: 3,913 Units

Rensselaer County has a 12.8% poverty rate according to the New York State Community Action Association’s 2015 Poverty Profile Report. There are approximately 5,811 extremely low income renter households with only 1,898 adequate, affordable, and available units. This means that Rensselaer County needs to invest in at least 3,913 units to ensure each family in Rensselaer has a safe, comfortable, stable place to call home.

Saratoga Housing Gap: 3,108 Units

Saratoga County has a 7% poverty rate according to the New York State Community Action Association’s 2015 Poverty Profile Report. There are approximately 4,350 extremely low income renter households with only 1,242 adequate, affordable, and available units. This means that Saratoga County needs to invest in at least 3, 108 units to ensure each family in Saratoga has a safe, comfortable, stable place to call home.

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