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U.S. Census: Low-income Renters Spent Larger Share of Income on Rent in 2021

The percentage of income needed to pay rent increased for many low-income households from pre-pandemic to post, the most recent Census data reports.

The percentage that renters spent on housing has increased since 2019, according to data released recently from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2021 American Community Survey. 

And those renters who have the lowest annual incomes saw the greatest increase in percentage of gross housing prices. 

The average for all renters increased from 29.3% of their income in 2019 to 30.6% in 2021. Any cost ratio above 30% is considered a cost burden, according to the U.S. Census. Severely burdened is defined as 50% of one’s income going towards gross rent, and the number of renters in that category rose from 23% to 25.4%, which means about 10.4 million renters are now severely burdened by the cost of gross rent, according to the U.S. Census survey. 

For more information or to see more data on rising rent costs, read the full analysis from the U.S. Census. 

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