The Rent Eats First: Using Residual Income to Measure Rental Affordability

Location: Virtual

Speaker(s): Alexander Hermann

Most renters spend more on housing than any other basic necessity and almost half of all renters are cost burdened, meaning they spend more than 30 percent of their income on housing. While cost-burdened renters almost certainly reduce spending on other necessities such as food, healthcare, and transportation, the 30 percent figure does not fully account for expenses that vary with a household’s individual circumstances. In this presentation, Alexander Hermann, a senior research analyst at the Center, will discuss research he is doing with Whitney Airgood-Obricki and Sophia Wedeen that uses a national-level estimate of residual-income burdens to show how rental affordability varies by household type, household income, and metropolitan area.