The Breakdown

Explaining Southern California's economy

Study: Orange County has shortfall of 118,895 affordable homes

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82670 full

There's a shortfall of 118,895 affordable homes in Orange County, which is the third-largest shortage in California, according to a new report from the California Housing Partnership Corporation.

Los Angeles has the biggest shortfall in the state: 490,340 homes. 

Median rents in Orange County increased by 19-percent between 2000 and 2012, while the median income declined by ten-percent, according to the report. During the same time, L.A. saw a 25-percent jump in rents, and a nine-percent drop in incomes.

"Coupled with stagnant wages, increasing housing costs have pushed many low-income households’ budgets to the breaking point," the report said.

One of the biggest culprits is funding for affordable housing, which has been dramatically reduced at both the federal and state level in recent years. The report found there has been a 76-percent decrease in funding for affordable homes in Orange County since 2008.

Another problem – though a lesser one – is that there are more and more renters because there are fewer people who can afford to be homeowners.

"While the overall population increased by just two-percent between 2006 and 2012, the percentage of renter households increased by 17-percent, exacerbated in part by displacement caused by the foreclosure crisis" the report found.

The report makes several recommendations, including passing state legislation to create a permanent source of funding to built and maintain affordable housing.

"If California is to rebuild a strong and diverse economy that includes low- and moderate-income households, our state must reinvest in affordable homes and develop responsive policy." the report notes.

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