Housing Affordability, Section 8 Vouchers and Homelessness in Maryland

  • 2013

Housing Affordability, Section 8 Vouchers and Homelessness in Maryland

Author:
Krystal Watson
Abstract:

The purpose of this study is to examine the relationship between affordable housing, homelessness, and the Housing Choice Voucher Program (formerly Section 8) in the state of Maryland. Affordable housing is defined as an individual or family not spending more than 30 percent of their gross income a month on housing expenses. An individual's inability to afford their housing expenses can lead to the need for public assistance or homelessness if not corrected. There is evidence to suggest that the rate of homelessness is rising not only in Maryland but across the United States due to many economic factors, including lack of affordable housing. As a result, the use of the Housing Choice Voucher Program will become a necessity for many individuals and families. In Maryland, there are year-long or greater waiting lists for people to be able to use the program. Unfortunately, the state is unable to keep up with the demand for housing and vouchers. As a result, the Housing Choice Voucher Program is failing at preventing homelessness.