A Report on Worst Case Housing Needs in 1999: New Opportunity Amid Continuing Challenges, Executive Summary, January 2001
This report documents a significant decrease - of at least 440,000, or 8 percent - in the number of renter households with worst case housing needs between 1997 and 1999. This welcome reversal of a ten-year trend of increasing worst case needs provides strong evidence of the effectiveness of the nation's economic and housing policies in helping the very lowest income households.
Despite the welcome evidence of the increased capacity of very-low-income renters to pay for housing, there continue to be nearly five million renter households with worst case housing needs - a critical problem that requires continued attention and funding. Moreover, the recent progress is highly vulnerable to an economic downturn which would slow or reverse the income growth among very-low-income households. Due to the fact that rents adjust slowly and that some increases reflect capital improvements, rents would not drop as quickly as incomes in the event of a slowdown.
Related reports can be found at Affordable Housing/Worst Case Needs Reports to Congress