Why is Housing Important in Renton?

Nearly 6,000 families in Renton pay more than half their income for housing. These households have limited resources left over to pay for other life necessities such as food, clothing, medical care, transportation, and education. They are also at higher risk of displacement when housing costs rise or life circumstances change.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) considers housing to be affordable if it costs no more than 30% of a household’s income. Households paying more than 30% of their income for housing are considered to be cost-burdened, while households paying more than 50% are severely cost-burdened.

Over 35% of Renton households – or 14,000 families – are cost-burdened. Learn more about housing cost burden in Renton using this interactive tool to explore the data. 

What is the City’s Role?

Most of the housing supply in Washington has been built by the private sector and sold in the private market, with some contributions by nonprofit and public sector organizations. Because housing is developed by different businesses that range from small local companies to large multinational firms, the role that governments can play in this system to achieve community goals for housing can be confusing and less direct than with other programs.

Local governments can influence different components of the market through:
  • Development regulations to manage the design and characteristics of new housing development
  • Development incentives to promote investment in housing types that are in greatest need
  • Financial assistance through direct funding support for lowest income segments
  • Support for residents to assist households in need and provide broader services for the community.
The City of Renton offers support for residents and developers. Links to online housing resources and projects are in the left-hand column. 
Contact Information
Hannah Bahnmiller, Housing Programs Manager
Community and Economic Development

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