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Set Housing Priorities

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Select or type the name of the state, county, city or town, or the United States as a whole.

Housing priorities should be informed by a community’s values and the conditions in its housing market. An analysis of the conditions in a housing market identifies where a housing market is failing to meet the needs of community members, while a community’s values determine which failures in the housing market the community dedicates resources to addressing first.

The analysis should include both a thorough assessment of the data, provided here within the Indiana Housing Dashboard, and community engagement to compare community members' experiences with the data. How to engage the community and compare the data from the dashboard with experience of the community is described in more detail in the Housing Planning section.

It is important to set clear priorities to allow municipalities and their community partners to coordinate with each other and focus their limited resources. These priorities provide points to organize around to marshal resources, align multiple partners and sustain a collaborative effort.

Accommodate Growth

Allowing the number of homes to grow to match demand for homes is the foundation, and a prerequisite, for creating an affordable housing market and an equitable local economy. A healthy housing market - one in which the market meets the vast majority of existing and new households' needs for safe, quality homes - will include an increase in the number of homes that is responsive to demand across different housing types and price points. If not enough homes are added to accommodate growth then the price, both sale price and rent, will get bid up as households compete for an insufficient supply of housing.

The result of this competition is decreasing affordability as home prices grow faster than the incomes of existing residents, and often the displacement of existing community members who struggle to afford higher housing costs. The lack of homes to accommodate growth can also harm economic prosperity if companies are unable to recruit new employees because of the cost of living. Tools to accommodate growth will reduce the barriers to developing a variety of types of new homes in neighborhoods throughout the community.

Explore Policies & Programs to Accommodate Growth

Change in Households by Income (2011-2021)

Change in the number of households in each income group in your community provides insights into change in the demand for homes at different prices. Decreasing households in an income group can indicate households moving out of the community or their income levels changing. A drop in lower income households can indicate displacement pressure, while an increase in higher income households can indicate greater demand and competitive pressure for homes in the community.


Source: American Community Survey, 5-Year

Homes Built Per 1,000 Jobs Created (2011-2021)

Tracking the number of homes built per 1000 jobs created can help you assess the responsiveness of the housing supply to economic growth. When the number of jobs created significantly exceeds the number of homes built, the new demand for homes will start to exceed new supply, driving prices up.


Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics, HUD Building Permits Survey

Top 5 Occupations and Salary (2022)

The top five occupations in your community can be used to anticipate demand for homes at price points that are affordable to salaries in those occupations.


Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

New Units Permitted by Year (2011-2021)

The number of new building permits over time provides insight into how many homes are being built. This should be compared with the number of jobs being added in the market and the demographics (age, size, etc.) of households being added to understand if new housing aligns with demand.


Source: HUD Building Permit Survey

Homes Affordable by Income (2016-2021)

The number of rental homes affordable to each income group (“affordable” defined as paying less than 30% of income in housing costs) can help track progress towards the preservation and creation of homes that are available and affordable to households throughout the income distribution in your community. This metric can also help reveal emerging affordability challenges for different income groups.


Source: American Community Survey, 5-Year

Median Rent

Median rent paid in your community over time reflects changes in the cost of rental homes. When rent is increasing quickly this indicates growing competition for limited housing.


Source: Zillow ZORI

Renters by Income (2021)

The number of renter households by income can reflect where the demand for rental housing of certain price points is concentrated.


Source: American Community Survey, 5-Year

Single Family Homes: Rented Versus Owned (2021)

The respective share of rental and owner-occupied homes that are single-family can help you understand if single-family homes are shifting from homeownership to rental. Further, when compared to data on new construction, it can help you understand how the housing market is creating homes to support homeownership compared to rental opportunities. If the single-family rental rate is rising it can be an indicator that barriers to accessing homeownership are rising or that single family homes are more attractive to renters because of the size or location of those homes.


Source: American Community Survey, 5-Year

Change in Share of Vacant and Available Homes (2011-2021)

Vacant and available homes are housing homes that are “for sale” or “for rent”. Since not all vacant homes are available to occupy, this metric helps you understand how much slack there is in the housing market for those who are actively looking for housing. While there is not one “healthy” rate, when the share of vacant and available homes drops below 5% this typically represents a housing market in which supply has not kept up with demand and renters and buyers will struggle to find available inventory.


Source: American Community Survey, 5-Year, as share of total housing units in geography.