Education

Educating the public is central to VAHC’s success and our mission. On this page, you’ll find links and resources that provide context for housing need and affordability at a state and national level.

Affordability in Vermont

Renting in Vermont poses unique challenges. Here are some facts and statistics to give context to the environment in which VAHC advocates:

  • Vermont had a very low 3.4% rental vacancy rate in 2018 (the latest year for which data is available). This means renters are hard-pressed to find available, affordable apartments and landlords have an advantage in the market, leading to rent increases. Learn more.

  • For every 100 extremely low-income renter households, there are only 49 available and affordable rental apartments—a deficit of about 9,613 units. 78 percent of extremely-low income renter households are cost-burdened (paying more than 30 percent of their income toward housing), and 64 percent are severely cost-burdened (paying more than 50 percent of their income toward housing).  Learn more. 

  • The average Vermonter needs to earn $23.68 per hour to afford a two-bedroom unit in Vermont; however, the average renter in Vermont earns only $13.83 per hour. Vermont has the 6th largest affordability gap for renters of any state in the nation. Learn more.

  • A Vermont resident earning the minimum wage of $11.75 per hour would have to work 81 hours a week to afford an average two-bedroom apartment, or 64 hours per week to afford an average one-bedroom apartment. Learn more.

  • Vermont has the 16th most expensive “Housing Wage” overall for renters, and the 8th most expensive housing wage for renters in rural areas. Learn more.

 

Housing, Renters, and Homeowners in Vermont

Vermont’s housing landscape is unique in that many renters are part of an aging population. Along with affordability on a limited income, housing in Vermont needs to be accessible as renters and homeowners age in place. 35% of Vermont’s housing stock was built before 1939, which makes aging in place even more difficult. Additionally, the aging population effects rents as opposed to owns their homes which creates a housing landscape with unique challenges.

  • The greatest growth in households by age is the 65-74 demographic, making Vermont one of the “grayest” states.

  • Barriers to homeownership force young families to postpone buying a home, which pushes them out of state and further strains the tight rental market.

 

Homelessness in Vermont

Every year in January, the Vermont Coalition to End Homelessness, Chittenden County Homeless Alliance, and Institute for Community Alliances conducts a count of the number of homeless people living in the state. Here are some key facts from the 2019 report that offer insights into the issue of homelessness in Vermont:

  • There were 1,089 Vermonters experiencing literal homelessness, a 15.5% decrease, compared to the 2018 one-day count.

  • There were 772 households in the count, a 16% decrease (145 fewer households) from 2018.

  • 251 (23%) of Vermonters experiencing homelessness were children under 18

  • 131 Vermonters (12%) reported that they were fleeing domestic or sexual violence

  • A disproportionate amount of people identified as Black or African American and Hispanic or Latino, compared to state demographics; 8% were Black or African American, compared to 1% of the state population; 4% were Hispanic or Latino, compared to 1% of the state population.

 

Why Affordable Housing Matters

Affordable housing is an issue that is both a cause and a symptom of economic injustice. Housing matters because it acts as the foundation of so many other parts of our lives – once someone has a roof over their head, they can focus their energy on things like feeding families and securing employment.

When housing takes up 30 percent or less of our income – regardless of income level – we all have more time, money, and resources to dedicate to making our communities a better place.

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Housing 101

Every two years, the Vermont Affordable Housing Coalition and partners coordinates Housing 101/102 are presentations at the Vermont Statewide Housing Conference. They help orient newer affordable housing professionals and members of the public to the complex world of housing, and give context to Vermont’s housing and homelessness needs, services, and nonprofit landscapes.

 

2022 Housing 101

2018 Housing 101

 

2014 Housing 101

NOTE: download files to access entire document.

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