The present report draws native the nationwide Point-in-Time count that occurred in January that 2020, just a couple of weeks prior to COVID-19 was asserted a nationwide emergency. Thus, the data does no reflect any kind of of the changes brought about by the crisis. Instead, the existing report reflects the State the Homelessness in America just before a once-in-a-lifetime event interrupted the condition quo.

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The Basics

In January 2020, there were 580,466 human being experiencing homelessness in America. Most were people (70 percent), and the rest were civilization living in family members with children. They stayed in every state and territory, and also they reflect the diversity of our country.

Special Populations. Historically, policymakers and also practitioners in ~ every level of federal government have concentrated special fist on particular subpopulations.

Decision-makers are frequently concerned around children and young world due to their vulnerability. People in family members with kids make increase 30 percent the the homeless population. Unaccompanied youth (under period 25) account for six percent that the larger group.


People experiencing “chronic homelessness” belong to another group that regularly singled the end for attention. These individuals have disabilities and also have also: 1) been repeatedly homeless for at least a year; or 2) experienced homelessness in ~ least four times in the last 3 years because that a linked length of time the at least a year. Chronically homeless people are at this time 19 percent of the homeless population.

Finally, as result of their business to our country, veterans are regularly analyzed individually from the larger group. Castle represent just six percent of world experiencing homelessness.

Populations many at Risk. although the homeless populace is diverse, some subgroups are more likely to find themselves without a ar to speak to home. Threat is considerably tied come gender, race, and ethnicity.

Males space far much more likely to endure homelessness 보다 their female counterparts. The end of every 10,000 males, 22 room homeless. Because that women and girls, that number is 13. Sex disparities space even much more evident when the focus is specifically on individual adults (the most far-reaching subgroup within homelessness). The overwhelming majority (70 percent) room men.


Race is another significant predictor. Just like so plenty of other areas of American life, in the history marginalized groups are more likely to it is in disadvantaged in ~ housing and homelessness spheres. Greater unemployment rates, lower incomes, less accessibility to healthcare, and greater incarceration prices are some of the factors likely contributing to greater rates of homelessness amongst people the color.

Numerically, white human being are the biggest racial team within homelessness, audit for an ext than a quarter-million people. However, in the history marginalized racial teams are far an ext likely to suffer homelessness together a an outcome of segregation and discrimination in employment and also housing, amongst other things.

Native Hawaiians and also other Pacific Islanders have actually the greatest rate the homelessness (109 the end of every 10,000 people).1 teams such as aboriginal Americans (45 the end of every 10,000) and also Black or afri Americans (52 out of every 10,000) additionally experience elevated rates. Importantly, these rates are much higher than the nation’s in its entirety rate of homelessness (18 out of every 10,000).


Unsheltered Homelessness. The nation has a system of short-term shelters the reaches many human being in need. However, some still sleep in areas not ordinarily designated for that function (for example, sidewalks, subway trains, vehicles, or parks). These unsheltered people are considered an especially vulnerable due to their exposure to the elements and lack that safety, amongst other things.

Homeless programs and systems provide shelter for most world experiencing homelessness (61 percent). However, far-ranging variation exists amongst subgroups. Because that example, children are frequently a priority because that homeless services systems. Together a result, family members with youngsters are the very least likely to it is in unsheltered (only ten percent that unsheltered world are living in families with children). However, young human being not living v their family members do not reap the same accessibility to services—50 percent the unaccompanied homeless youth are unsheltered.

Individuals suffering homelessness top top their own are particularly vulnerable. Many (51 percent) live in areas not supposed for person habitation. Those who room chronically homeless are most most likely to be in these circumstances—66 percent room without any kind of shelter in ~ all.

COVID-19 Impacts. an extensive national-level data top top homelessness to be last built up in January 2020, i m sorry was before COVID-19 was asserted a national emergency. Thus, this report does no reflect shifts in homelessness that might have emerged because of actions taken to attend to COVID or elevated unemployment rates tied to the pandemic or the recession. Similarly, data top top services easily accessible to world experiencing homelessness was accumulated just before the crisis began. This info does, however, administer a feeling of exactly how prepared homeless equipment were to serve a potential flow of new people right into homelessness prior to the pandemic.

Unfortunately, COVID-19-related health involves disrupted counts of unsheltered world in 2021. Thus, data on this team will no be fully updated until late 2022 or at an early stage 2023, leave a far-ranging hole in easily accessible knowledge ~ above homelessness.

Trends in Homelessness

Between 2019 and also 2020, nationwide homelessness raised by two percent. This adjust marks the 4th straight year of incremental population growth. Previously, homelessness had actually primarily been on the decline, decreasing in eight of the nine years before the existing trend began.


Progress has been modest. In 2020, the number of unhoused civilization was only 10 percent lower than in 2007 (the very first year the nationwide data collection). Unfortunately, COVID-19 and the present recession may be making matters worse. COVID-19, elevated joblessness rates and widespread evictions could diminish or completely wipe out previous gains make by those working to finish homelessness.

Uneven Progress. While overall progress on ending homelessness has been modest, over there is significant variation amongst subgroups. Some have experienced striking reduce in their counts.

Veterans room a an excellent example of these reductions. Currently, 82 communities and also 3 states have actually announced that they ended veterans’ homelessness (meaning the systems can ensure the homelessness is rare, brief, and one-time). Nationally, veteran homelessness has decreased 39 percent since 2007. Homeless families with kids are one more group the has lessened in dimension — 27 percent since 2007. And, prior to a tendency reversal in current years, chronic separation, personal, instance homelessness had actually dropped by 35 percent.

Multiple reasons could define why veterans, world with families, and also chronically homeless individuals have had periods in which lock have better reductions in size than the as whole group experiencing homelessness. Part subpopulations have been prioritized through (national-, state-, and local-level) stakeholders, benefiting from better attention and/or resources. However, factors external come homeless services systems likewise contribute come outcomes. At bottom, this subgroups highlight that significant reductions in homelessness are possible and have actually occurred.

While real progress has occurred for populations such as veterans, others have actually been left behind— generally individual adults. The number of individuals suffering homelessness has remained revolution over time, to decrease by a mere 1 percent between 2007 and also 2020.

Although many veterans and also chronically homeless human being fall under the umbrella group of “individuals,” the majority of individuals do not belong to among these subgroups. Separation, personal, instance homeless adults who room not veterans or chronically homeless have generally not to be the focus of one-of-a-kind attention or resources.

Even much more troubling, in current years, vault and far-reaching gains made by chronically homeless individuals have actually been quickly eroding. As provided above, the dimension of this group had decreased considerably in the period before 2016. However, since that year, their numbers have surged by 43 percent.

Unsheltered Homelessness on the Rise. due to the fact that data on homelessness has been collected, unsheltered homelessness has actually largely trended downward. By 2015, it had dropped by practically a third.

However, over the last five years, there has actually been a reversal of that trend. The unsheltered population has surged by 30 percent, almost wiping out nearly a te of previous gains. The variety of people currently living unsheltered is basically as high as it remained in 2007.

The trend of escalating number of people living unsheltered impacts almost every significant subgroup—including people of every race, ethnicity, gender, and also most age groups. Only kids (people under 18) have realized an as whole decrease in unsheltered homelessness throughout the present surge.

Locating Homelessness

Ending homeless is an ongoing difficulty throughout America. However, the severity of the challenge varies by state and community. Locating the locations experiencing the most significant challenges, and directing additional attention and also possibly brand-new resources towards them, could result in meaningful reductions in homelessness. There are two ways two evaluate geographic variations—counts and also rates.

Counts. assessing the jurisdictions v the biggest homeless populations is informative. Many also have the highest possible populations, overall. For example, California is the most populous state in the union and additionally has the largest variety of people experiencing homelessness. Similarly, the Continuums of treatment (CoC) through the largest homeless populations include highly populous major cities (e.g., new York City, Los Angeles, and Seattle) and also Balance of State CoCs encompassing many towns and also cities.

Fifty-seven percent of people experiencing homelessness room in 5 states (California, new York, Florida, Texas, and also Washington). Fifty percent are in the twenty-five CoCs. Thus, a significant share of this national challenge is in a small number of places with big homeless counts. Meanwhile, most areas have relatively small homeless populaces to serve. This should impact how the difficulty is addressed.

Rates. Homeless counts are simply one approach to understanding the nature that homelessness. Putting them right into context to add nuance to the story. For example, mean 100,000 world were to experience homelessness in California (a state with an ext than 39 million people), those would certainly be far less complicated circumstances 보다 100,000 world being homeless in Wyoming (a state with roughly 575,000 people). Thus, the is beneficial to consider the homeless populace in relation to the basic population.

Rates of homelessness differ widely across the country. For example, the northeast Oklahoma CoC has actually the lowest price in the country, reporting 1 person experiencing homelessness the end of every 10,000 people. Meanwhile, the Humboldt county CoC in California has actually the highest possible rate of 126 world being homeless the end of every 10,000.

Many the the states and CoCs through the highest rates that homelessness have the greatest housing costs. Because that example, san Francisco has actually the 4th highest price of homelessness in the country; and it has the nation’s highest possible housing wage (necessary earning to afford to rent an apartment). Low-income civilization in together jurisdictions uncover it complicated to secure and also keep housing they deserve to afford, impacting homelessness.

Other jurisdictions with high prices of homelessness have high rates of poverty. Because that example, CoCs favor Humboldt and also Imperial City in California height the above ranking list, being amongst those ten CoCs with the greatest rates the homelessness in the country. They also have high poor rates, exceeding 20 percent of their overall populations. Such jurisdictions have reasonably low housing costs however have a lot of of civilization experiencing financial hardships, some bring about homelessness.

Understanding Homelessness in ~ a Jurisdiction. Jurisdictions that compare your data to the of other jurisdictions have the right to gain brand-new insights into the severity of your challenges. For instance, the jurisdictions with the greatest rates that homelessness (people homeless together a percentage of the basic population) will understand that they are, in fact, experiencing more challenges than other parts of the country.

Comparisons can also help to identify best practices worthy of replication. Take into consideration the example of CoC A which decides to compares itself to CoC B (a jurisdiction with comparable characteristics). When CoC A learns that it has actually a significantly higher rate that homelessness, that will likely seek out explanations for the differences. CoC A may learn that CoC B has particularly effective approach to securing real estate placements. Implementing the finest practices the CoC B can assist CoC A realize comparable progress.

The dashboard at the height of this page and also the over rankings graph are valuable in making in-depth comparisons amongst states and also CoCs.

Homeless assistance in America

The nation’s homeless solutions systems do not have enough resources to totally meet the requirements of everyone enduring homelessness. Thus, the is valuable to research the complicated decisions they should make, including exactly how much of their restricted funds should be invested on temporary versus long-term housing.

Temporary Housing. Because that the first time in five years, CoCs boosted their overall number of year-round temporary real estate beds (Emergency Shelter, safe Haven, and also Transitional Housing). In January 2020, there were 2 percent an ext of these beds 보다 in the ahead year. And the total year-round bed count was 11 percent lower than the all-time high, which arisen in 2013.

A national-level photo of the with of homeless services systems is informative. Individual neighborhood circumstances vary. However, in the aggregate, equipment were maybe to offer a year-round bed to only 50 percent of individuals, yet to 100 percent of family members (with a excess of virtually 18,000 beds).

During the winter months, some neighborhoods temporarily complement these year-round beds with seasonal ones. Thus, they may have the ability to serve much more people during that time that the year. But, unfortunately, many people are unsheltered, sleeping on sidewalks, in exit buildings, or in other locations not meant for person habitation. Being unsheltered is commonly a an obstacle for individual adults, however some family members with youngsters are additionally in this situations.

Current data mirrors circumstances in January 2020. The pandemic interrupted accessibility to temporary real estate services. The CDC’s social distancing recommendations frequently translated into much more space between beds and, therefore, fewer bed being obtainable in currently facilities. New beds were created in non-congregate locations, mostly motels/hotels, that enabled people to isolate themselves indigenous others. The year’s network bed gains and also losses are at this time unknown, as room the pandemic’s results on offerings in 2021 and also beyond.

Permanent Housing. CoCs have had actually years in i m sorry temporary real estate offerings to be on the decline. However, lock consistently boost investments in permanent housing beds (Permanent donate Housing, fast Re-Housing, and Other). Over the last 5 years, these species of beds flourished by 20 percent.

These numbers reflect a transition in policy priorities. In recent years, there has been a renewed focus on housing world as quickly as possible rather than allowing them to linger unlimited in shelters and also unsheltered locations.

Forty-six states and the district of Columbia have added to this trend over the last 5 years, cultivation their number of permanent real estate beds. Currently, 58 percent of every homeless system beds are designated for long-term housing.

Through the cares Act the 2020 and also the American Rescue setup Act that 2021, Congress invested billions of brand-new dollars in programs that should influence the variety of people and families in long-term housing. Most notably, they appropriated $4 billion because that the Emergency Solutions approve program, $5 billion because that Emergency real estate Vouchers, and also $5 billion for the house program (rental assistance, affordable housing development, and other services). Thus, permanent housing placements need to be continuing on an upward trajectory in 2020, 2021, and possibly beyond.

Common forms of Assistance. Nationally, the most usual forms that homeless aid are permanent supportive housing (40 percent of mechanism beds) and also emergency shelter (32 percent of mechanism beds).

Over the last 5 years, the fastest cultivation forms the assistance have actually been quick Re-Housing and also “Other irreversible Housing” (permanent real estate other than rapid Re-Housing or permanent Supportive Housing). Throughout that time period, the former broadened by 104 percent and the last by 105 percent.

Only one form of intervention has been top top the decline—transitional housing. There space 56 percent fewer bed in this group than there were in 2007. This shift is responsible for decreases in the overall availability of temporary real estate in recent years. It additional reflects the policy goal of moving much more people into permanent real estate as conveniently as possible.

Indicators that Risk

Many americans live in poverty, amounting to virtually 34 million world or 10.5 percent of the U.S. Population. Together a result, they struggle to afford necessities such as housing.

In 2019, 6.3 million Americans family members experienced severe housing cost burden, which method they spent much more than 50 percent the their income on housing. This marked the 5th straight year of decreases in the dimension of this group. However, the variety of severely cost-burdened American households is tho 10 percent greater than it remained in 2007, the year the nation began monitoring homelessness data.

“Doubling up” (or share the housing of others for financial reasons) is one more measure of housing hardship. In 2019, an estimated 3.7 million civilization were in these situations. Part doubled-up people and families have fragile relationships through their hosts or face other difficulties in the home, putting them at hazard of homelessness. End the last 6 years, the variety of doubled-up human being has been trending downward however is 3 percent greater than in 2007.

Over a period lasting an ext than a decade, the nation has not made any type of real progression in reducing the number of Americans at danger of homelessness. In fact, these difficulties are contempt worse. The trends lines in the over chart allude to severe home cost and also doubled-up numbers the are higher in 2019 보다 they to be in 2007. Even an ext troubling is that obtainable data predates the COVID-19 health and also economic crisis. Reduced work hours and elevated unemployment throughout the recession might be raising housing price burdens and driving much more people right into doubled-up situations.

Even before the pandemic, over there was significant variation amongst the states in their data on world at danger of homelessness. National-level data, which has actually been discouraging, deserve to mask even more dire difficulties in particular areas that the country. Because that example, because 2007, severe-housing-cost burdened households grew by 35 percent in Hawaii and 36 percent in Connecticut (numbers that are even higher than national-level growths in this areas). Similarly, end that exact same time period, the number of people doubled up increased by 102 percent in Idaho and 65 percent in Florida.

Complicating matters further, the impacts of the existing recession and also responsive policies have actually varied throughout the country. As a result, regional differences in at-risk real estate factors can be shifting and changing.

Sources and Methodology

Data top top homelessness space based on annual point-in-time (PIT) counts performed by Continuums of treatment (CoCs) to estimate the variety of people experiencing homelessness top top a given night. The recent counts are from January 2020. Point-in-time data from 2007 to 2020 are accessible on HUD Exchange.

Rates of homelessness to compare point-in-time counts come state, county, and also city population data native the Census Bureau’s population Estimates program (Population and Housing Unit approximates data tables, 2019 version). Prices for racial, ethnic, and gender demographic groups are drawn from the Census Bureau’s American ar Survey 5-year Data (2019 version).

Data top top homeless assistance, or bed capacity of homeless solutions programs on a offered night, space reported each year by CoCs in addition to point-in-time counts. This data room compiled in the housing Inventory count (HIC), i beg your pardon is also available on HUD Exchange for 2007 through 2020.

Data ~ above at-risk populations space from analyses through the nationwide Alliance to end Homelessness of the Census Bureau’s 2019 American ar Survey 1-year Estimates. Negative renter households with a serious housing price burden are families whose total income falls under the applicable poor threshold and also who are paying 50 percent or much more of total household revenue to housing rent. For human being living doubled up, poverty is based on the composition and income of the whole household as compared to the poor thresholds. A person is considered living doubled up based upon his or her connection to the head the household and includes: one adult boy (18 year old or older) who is no in school, is married, and/or has children; a sibling; a parent or parent-in-law; one adult grandchild that is no in school; a grandchild who is a member of a subfamily; a son- or daughter-in-law; one more relative; or any type of non-relative.

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1The Pacific Islander and Native American teams are reasonably small when compared to populaces such together whites and also Hispanics/Latinxs. This is just one of the determinants that provides them more daunting for homeless services systems and also the Census to counting them. Over there is a should ensure the data collection efforts focused top top these groups becomes much more precise. However, available data suggests significant disparities and causes of problem that space worthy that discussion. See USICH, skilled Panel on Homelessness amongst American Indians, Alaska Natives, and also Native Hawaiians (2012) and also Oversight hear on getting to Hard-to-Count communities in the 2020 Census, 116th congress (2020)(testimony that Kevin J. Allis).