The percentage of Grand Rapids households that struggle with housing costs is in line with the national average, but the burden is greater for renters than owners.
A report from Construction Coverage found 30.4% of Grand Rapids households are cost-burdened, compared to the national rate of 31%.
According to the most recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau, almost one-third of American households are considered cost-burdened, meaning they spend 30% or more of their income on housing.
While this figure has declined by almost 6 percentage points following the 2008-09 recession, it is likely to increase again as the U.S. faces an unprecedented economic downturn due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
While nearly one-third of all households are cost-burdened, renters are more likely to be than homeowners. Nationally, over 46% of renter households are cost-burdened compared to just 22.3% of owner households. This holds true across all income groups except for households making $75,000 or more.
In Grand Rapids, that discrepancy between owners and renters is greater. According to the study, the share of owner households in Grand Rapids that are cost-burdened is 16.2%, while 47% of renter households are cost-burdened.
Additionally, the median monthly housing costs in Grand Rapids was $898, and the median household income was $61,937
To determine the cities with the most cost-burdened households, researchers at Construction Coverage analyzed the latest data from the U.S. Census Bureau. The researchers ranked cities according to the share of all cost-burdened households.
Researchers also calculated the share of owner households that are cost-burdened, the share of renter households that are cost-burdened, median monthly housing costs and median household income.