The annual PAHRC Report is a comprehensive source for research and statistics on assisted housing. Following a different theme each year, the report provides data on the supply of housing assistance, persons receiving assistance, and the impacts of assistance on residents and communities. Its purpose is to foster a better understanding of the need for housing assistance and how this assistance helps meet the needs of low-income families and their communities. PAHRC Report Research Spotlights provide a detailed dive into research and data highlighted in the PAHRC Report.
PAHRC Report Research Spotlight: The Education Boost
The Education Boost: Lifting Families Out of Poverty estimates the value that improvements in education can have on positive exits from rental assistance, describes the barriers to low-income individuals face attending college, and investigates the gaps in educational attainment between rent-assisted households and low-income unassisted renters. It finds that for every additional year of education obtained by a rent-assisted household head, the family’s chance of a positive exit is 11% higher than it would be without any additional education.
The report also shows that the cost of college and other barriers, such as childcare, transportation, connectivity, and peer networks, are still significant hurdles for many low-income families looking to attend college.
Average rent-assisted individuals under 50 may need up to 29 years to obtain a college degree if financing college out of pocket. The report suggests that external resources will be needed to help low-income families receiving rental assistance pay for college and matriculate in a reasonable amount of time.
Housing is a Foundation
The 2016 PAHRC Report examines the unique position of affordable housing to serve as a springboard to lift families out of poverty. It finds that assisted housing provides a niche resource for low-income children, seniors, and disabled individuals and that families selecting into rental assistance programs often face additional barriers to success beyond poverty, which are greater than those of their low-income unassisted peers. However, the report also empirically demonstrates that housing assistance can help improve stability, financial security, and investments in health and education. At a time when the need for affordable housing is expected to grow even more critical, the report also documents how housing providers and community development stakeholders are creating innovative solutions to pair housing and resident services to strengthen our nation’s affordable housing stock and improve the lives of low-income families.
Housing Agency Waiting Lists and the Demand for Housing Assistance
PAHRC’s inaugural Research Spotlight, Housing Agency Waiting Lists and the Demand for Housing Assistance, explores how housing agency waiting lists do and do not reflect the demand for housing assistance, since many waiting lists are closed and only capture families that decide to apply for assistance. Correcting for closed waiting lists, it finds that the demand for housing assistance is nearly 3 times higher per Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) and 6% higher per public housing unit. Without waiting list closures, an estimated 9.5 million families would be waiting for an HCV and 2 million families would be waiting for a public housing unit. The feature also includes interactive maps that allow you to explore the demand for housing assistance in your community, including its ‘corrected’ waiting list count.
Value of Home
Value of Home – 2015 PAHRC Report concludes that housing assistance can provide struggling families with the boost they need to achieve housing stability and economic advancement. Housing affordability is a major hurdle to stability and quality of life, and continues to be a growing problem for more Americans as the supply of affordable housing dwindles and the number of low-income families grows. Currently, housing assistance is targeted toward those that might be more vulnerable to the effects of poverty than average low-income households if unassisted. Assisted families are significantly more likely to include elderly adults, disabled individuals, single parents, or children under 18 than similar-income families who are not assisted. The report finds that households receiving rental assistance have greater stability, are less likely to experience homelessness, and live in higher quality units less likely to pose health and safety risks than unassisted low-income renters.
Why Housing Matters
Why Housing Matters - 2014 PAHRC Report, the inaugural PAHRC Report, explores the importance of a stable, decent home to low-income families and the role affordable housing plays in communities. It demonstrates that low-income families are positioned to experience greater housing instability and housing problems than households at least one step above the poverty line and investigates how assisted housing programs provide crucial supports to communities. It also illustrates how children, seniors, and disabled individuals are the main beneficiaries of assisted housing programs and shows that there is not enough assisted housing to meet the growing need for affordable housing.