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Affordable Housing 2008-2009

Note: The King County Benchmarks, Affordable Housing 2008 report is available for viewing in Adobe Acrobat format (PDF). You will need to have a copy of Adobe Acrobat Reader installed on your computer to view the report file. You can download a free copy of the Acrobat Reader here or visit the Adobe Web site to get more information (both are external links).

King County Benchmarks, Affordable Housing 2008
—complete document, including maps:
227 Kb PDF file

SPECIAL NOTE TO READERS: In previous years, the Affordable Housing bulletin based home affordability on U.S. HUD family income thresholds. This bulletin uses the median household income reported by the American Community Survey as a basis for affordability. Adjustments to prior year analysis have been made throughout this bulletin but comparison to reporting in previous bulletins should be made with caution.

What's Inside

As in previous years, the Supply of Affordable Rental Housing is insufficient for low income households with fewer than 10% of the market-rate rentals affordable to those earning 40% of median income (Indicator 21, page 2).

Almost 40% of all King County households pay more than 30% of their Income for Housing Costs (Indicator 22, page 4).

It is estimated that at least 25,000 people in King County experienced at least one episode of Homelessness in 2008. (Indicator 23, page 5).

The Home Purchase Affordability Gap for median-income households held at 53% in 2007. (Indicator 24, page 6).

Bucking the national trend, the Home Ownership Rate in King County has increased since 2000. (Indicator 25, page 7).

After a five-year downward trend, the Apartment Vacancy Rate grew slightly to 4.2% in 2008. (Indicator 26, page 8).

With income growing at a higher rate than home prices in 2007, King County experienced a change in the Trend of Housing Costs in Relation to Income. (Indicator 27, page 9).

Public Dollars Spent for Low Income Housing increased in 2005 as King County jurisdictions dedicated $18.6 million to create, preserve or repair over 1,000 affordable housing units (Indicator 28, page 10).

Housing Units Affordable to Low Income Households are not evenly distributed in the county, with east side cities holding less than five percent of all market rate rental units affordable to households that earn half of the median income. (Indicator 29, page 12).

Data Sources

Contact Information

Printed copies of the Benchmark Reports or information about the Benchmark Program are available from:

Lisa Voight , Performance Management Coordinator
King County Office of Strategic Planning and Performance Management
401 Fifth Avenue, Suite 810
Seattle, WA 98104-1818
206-263-9720 or via e-mail at

Updated: March 9, 2009

King County Benchmarks 2008
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