Report: LIHTC Program Supports Nearly 40 Percent of Region’s Rental Housing
Freddie Mac recently released a white paper highlighting the role that the LIHTC program serves in the rural Lower Mississippi Delta. The report shows that the LIHTC program supports a substantial percentage (39.2 percent) of multifamily rental housing in the region, more than three times the national average. The white paper, titled “LITHC in Rural Lower Mississippi Delta,” is part of Freddie Mac’s three-year Duty to Serve plan to increase rental and homeownership opportunities in historically underserved markets throughout the nation. This is the first of seven papers the Multifamily line of business will release over the next several months. Here are the key findings:
- The overall poverty rate for the region (22 percent) is substantially higher than the national average (14.6 percent). Average household income is 37 percent lower than the national average and 21 percent lower than the rural average.
- Rental housing is rare in rural Lower Mississippi Delta. Only 29.2 percent of households are renters (compared with 36.2 percent nationally). Of these renters, only 14.2 percent rent multifamily units (compared with 42.9 percent nationally).
- The relative abundance of LIHTC in the region does not indicate oversupply. It’s a symptom of a market where unsubsidized properties cannot operate because of the relatively low income and low population density.
- Single-family rentals make up 69.5 percent of all renters in the region. Both renters and homeowners in rural parts of the Lower Mississippi Delta prefer single-family structures. As a result, single-family communities and scattered site developments are common forms of LIHTC housing.