Nevada worst in nation at affordable housing, advocacy group says

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Number of affordable and available homes per 100 extremely low-income renter households, by state. National Low Income Housing Coalition/City Lab
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Number of affordable and available homes per 100 extremely low-income renter households, by state. National Low Income Housing Coalition/City Lab

No state in the nation has an adequate supply of affordable housing, and Nevada is the worst.

Nationally, for every 100 “extremely low-income” renter households, there are only 37 affordable and available rental homes.

In Nevada, there are only 19 homes per 100 extremely low-income renters, the lowest number in the country, according to a report released last week by the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC).

It’s worse still in the Las Vegas metropolitan area, with only 14 affordable homes available for every 100 extremely low-income households.

NLIHC describes “extremely low-income” households as those renters “whose household incomes are at or below the poverty guideline or 30% of their area median income.” The group says there are 90,300 such households in Nevada, and eight out of ten of them are paying more than half their total income on rent.

For “very low-income” households, those making between 31 and 50 percent of area median income, there are 38 affordable homes per 100 renter households. Eighty-seven percent of those households are paying more than 30 percent of their income on rent. For 43 percent of them, rent is more than half their income.

Nevada lawmakers have acknowledged the state’s housing shortage, although they themselves admit the proposals they are considering thus far — tax credits for and relaxed regulations and fees on developers — are not equal to the magnitude of the problem.

Hugh Jackson
Editor | Hugh Jackson has been writing about Nevada policy and politics for more than 20 years. He was editor of the Las Vegas Business Press, senior editor at the Las Vegas CityLife weekly newspaper, daily political commentator on the Las Vegas NBC affiliate, and wrote the then-groundbreaking Las Vegas Gleaner, which among other things was the only independent political blog from Nevada that was credentialed at the 2008 Democratic National Convention. He spent a few years as a senior energy and environmental policy analyst for Public Citizen, and has occasionally worked as a consultant on mining, taxation, education and other issues for Nevada labor and public interest organizations. His freelance work has been published in outlets ranging from the Guardian to Desert Companion to In These Times to the Oil & Gas Journal. For several years he also taught U.S. History courses at UNLV. Prior to moving to Las Vegas, he was a reporter and then assistant managing editor at the Casper Star-Tribune, Wyoming’s largest newspaper.

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