For many renter households, February could spell disaster. Although a second round of pandemic-related stimulus is on its way, the 11.4 million renter households who owe back rent could still face eviction when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) national moratorium on evictions expires at the end of January.
Current estimates suggest between 2.4 million and 5 million households are at risk of eviction, and that number may continue to grow. Certain groups, including low-income, Black, Indigenous, and Latinx households have faced disproportionate job losses because of the pandemic and are particularly vulnerable to housing insecurity because of their systematic exclusion from housing and economic opportunities. Income support and rental subsidies are essential for reducing the risk of housing instability and homelessness during and after the pandemic.
But we should aim to do more than prevent evictions, foreclosures, and homelessness. We should put safeguards in place now to better protect people from the next housing crisis and bolster resilience in their path to upward mobility. And temporary financial support is not enough. For households to advance beyond the inequitable, prepandemic status quo, policymakers and practitioners should create housing recovery strategies that advance holistic upward mobility.
We’ve identified five housing outcomes that policymakers and practitioners should keep in mind as they pivot from an emergency response to a housing recovery that advances holistic mobility from poverty:
- Housing affordability can promote multiple dimensions of mobility.
- Housing stability encourages civic engagement and promotes economic success, power, and belonging.
- Housing quality can have long-term effects on a household’s autonomy and economic success.
- Housing that builds wealth can offer homeowners a resource for investments in education, health, and other opportunities.
- Neighborhood context can influence upward mobility, with some “high-opportunity” neighborhoods offering more advantages.
Read the full article about housing outcomes by Elizabeth Champion and Megan Gallagher at Urban Institute.
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