No state in the country has enough housing that’s available and affordable for the lowest income renters. Connecticut lacks 86,717 rental units that are available and affordable to tenants with extremely low incomes, according to estimates from the National Low Income Housing Coalition.
For other Connecticut residents with low incomes, it means they’re rent burdened — paying more than a third of their income to housing costs.
New residential construction, particularly of multifamily housing, has lagged in Connecticut for years, a problem that’s been exacerbated by the pandemic, industry experts said.
Through the pandemic, developers have seen rising costs of materials and labor for new construction projects. And a portion of what’s been built has been billed as luxury housing, not affordable for people with lower incomes.
A new coalition of about 20 organizations is also pushing for a fair share law in Connecticut that would require municipalities to build a share of affordable housing to meet needs determined by the state. The overall initiative is called Growing Together Connecticut.
The state would also set incentives and enforcement tactics, said Erin Boggs, executive director of the Open Communities Alliance. The alliance is an organizing member on the steering committee.
“From our perspective, Connecticut has this sort of dual housing crisis,” Boggs said in an interview.
“On one hand, we are one of the most expensive states in the country, and on the other, we are one of the most segregated.”
Connecticut’s lagging residential construction hurts affordable housing supply, experts say, Ginny Monk, CT Insider, Feb. 19, 2022, available here