Affordable-housing programs endeavor to ensure homeless and low-income families have access to housing. However, the waiting period to secure assistance can be problematic for those in need, especially when budget cuts (such as the 2013 government sequestration) result in fewer vouchers.
Once they have a voucher in hand, this population continues to face adversity, because low vacancy rates often result in wait-listing for the limited housing available. One-bedroom units are particularly difficult to find, while two- and three-bedroom apartment homes may take 18 to 24 months to secure.
The benefit of affordable-housing programs is that not only do they provide financial assistance, but they also provide some regulatory oversight by ensuring that the properties are in good condition. But supply is significantly lacking in areas from Fort Collins, Colorado, to Chicago.