The Importance of Housing Stability
Housing instability is a complex problem that comprises a variety of issues. Housing insecurity, frequent house shifting, trouble paying rent, overcrowding, living with relatives, and homelessness are all associated with housing instability. Many Americans suffer from housing instability, which is problematic because it is a precursor to other issues. These issues include poor childhood development, family life imbalance, and detrimental physical and mental health effects.
In the United States alone, housing instability has been an issue of concern for a long time, but it has never been more critical than now, with a report from the National Low Income Housing Coalition showing that:
- 567,715 Americans experience homelessness on any given day
- Of those 567,715 Americans, 171,670 are people in families, while 396,045 are individuals
- 10.8 million extremely low-income renters account for 25% of all rented households in the United States
- Only 7.4 million households are affordable for the extremely low-income earners in the United States
These statistics are startling and indicate just how detrimental housing instability can be to the well-being of those affected by it. Housing should not only involve having a roof over one’s head—a house should also be a shelter that offers comfort by means of physical and emotional stability. Housing should be a place of happiness and bonding, but that can only be true if the housing is stable and gives families a chance to establish themselves. Here are some of the ways housing instability affects families.
Physical and Mental Health Issues
While homelessness can be incredibly detrimental to a person’s well-being, it is not the only aspect of housing instability that can have far-reaching effects on families. A study conducted on 22,000 families showed that the instability of their housing situation caused adverse physical and mental distress. The study found that being late on rent or moving houses more than twice increased the odds of negative health outcomes. Moreover, those affected were not just the individuals responsible for paying rent. The effects also involved their partners and dependents. This should be of significant concern as it shows how housing instability has far-reaching effects.
Adverse Effects on Family Life
The stability of family life is a vital aspect that determines how productive and fulfilling the life of family members can be. When housing instability takes root in families, there is an adverse effect on family life. In the United States, close to 18.4 million families are not stable in their family life since they spend 50% or more of their income on rent. This leaves them struggling with other day-to-day expenses such as food, healthcare, and transportation. Such a struggle to afford other necessities makes it even more difficult for families to make ends meet, which ultimately affects family stability.
Poor Childhood Development
Housing instability is also linked to issues that lead to detrimental effects on children’s development. Children who constantly change homes due to housing instability are more likely to perform worse in school than other children from stable houses. This shows how housing stability is a crucial driver of a child’s development. Children who live in substandard conditions, such as having leaking roofs and poorly wired houses, are more likely to experience physical and emotional problems.
At Archway Communities, we aim to elevate lives by providing access to affordable housing, food security, and the supportive social services people need to thrive. It is our mission to help children and families by providing valuable resources, like our extensive affordable housing options. We strive to create communities of dignity and respect for everyone, including families, neighbors, and staff. Find out how you can help make a difference by exploring our properties, signing up to volunteer with us, or making a donation today!