Community Land Trusts
February 8, 2022
Safe, stable housing can contribute to improvements in mental and physical health, civic engagement, social skills, educational and professional achievement, and can decrease use of emergency services. When housing is affordable, it can prevent stunted growth in children and decrease hospitalizations. Homeownership is in the nation’s best interest because it brings stability to families, can revive struggling communities, and contribute to economic growth. Unfortunately, safe and stable housing via ownership is not attainable for everyone. The number of people in the U.S. experiencing homelessness has been increasing steadily for four years, and as of January 2020, that number is over 580,000. Thirty percent of households nationwide are considered “housing cost burdened” because they spend more than 30% of their incomes on housing, and renters are more than twice as likely to be housing cost burdened than homeowners. Because of this burden, renters can have difficulty saving for a down payment and transitioning into homeownership. Renters are also unable to accumulate wealth by way of building value (equity) in their residences and cannot pass their residences to their loved ones to build generational wealth. The table in this document offers a comparison of Community Land Trusts and traditional homeownership.