Affordable Housing in D.C. Becoming More and More Scarce

The median rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the District of Columbia has gone up nearly 50 percent since 2000 while the number of low-income units has nearly halved, a report from the D.C. Fiscal Policy Institute says. According to the report, the price for a one-bedroom unit in the District, which sat at $735 in 2000, jumped to $1,100 by 2010, a 49.7 percent increase. Meanwhile, the number of low-income units fell from more than 70,000 to 34,500. Perhaps the most staggering statistic the report details is that nearly one in five households in the D.C. area put more than half of their income toward housing. The report, which falls in the midst of D.C.’s budget season, states simply that D.C. is becoming harder to afford and that aggressive government action is needed to save affordable housing options. The report advocates for D.C. setting aside more money for the Housing Production Trust Fund and for rental and home-buying assistance, as well as working with developers to ensure that affordable units are built on city-owned plots of land.



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