Barriers to Affordable Housing

Housing that is affordable is generally defined as housing a household can afford spending no more than 30% of their income. Many communities throughout the country are unable to create, provide, and maintain sufficient affordable housing units. This webpage is designed to assist those communities as they identify and address the barriers that are keeping them from meeting the need for affordable housing.

Types of Barriers:

Communities may be facing barriers in a range of areas. The following list gives some examples of barriers that communities have experienced while preparing their CPD Consolidated Plans over the years.

  • Tax policies- How is your community addressing the tax issues that may arise around current policies to help incentivize more affordable housing development?
  • Land use controls- Does your community have land use controls that may be counterproductive to affordable housing development? Has your community addressed these controls?
  • Zoning ordinances- Zoning ordinance can be a hindrance to affordable housing development. How has your community decided to use zoning ordinances to increase or provide more affordable housing for low-mod income households?
  • Building codes- Are building codes in your community conducive to maintaining and/or developing new affordable housing?
  • Fees and charges- How are fees and charges used in your community? Are they conducive to affordable housing development? Are they disproportionately affecting low-mod income households? Can your community work with affordable housing developers on reducing fees or charges that may hinder development?
  • Growth limits- Is your community growing? If so, is your community able to keep up with the affordable housing demand of your constituents? How can you use the growth of your community as a catalyst for increasing affordable housing?

While this list is not exhaustive, it provides a starting point to help your community identify and address barriers to affordable housing. As you work through your Consolidated Planning process, keep these questions in mind and work with your community to identify other areas that may be barriers to affordable housing. For more assistance on Affordable Housing Barriers visit the resources and links below.


Webinars: Affordable Housing Barriers 4-part series 

The live 4-part webinar series has concluded but you can still view and earn training credit for watching the series. You will find trainings to address several areas of addressing barriers to affordable housing. If there are additional topics that you would like us to cover, please reach out to your field rep and let us know how we can assist you.

Funding Opportunities:
Links to HUDExchange:
Links to Regulatory Requirements:

24 CFR 91- Consolidated Planning Requirements

HUD Regulatory Barriers Clearing House- Helps grantees identify barriers and strategies

FY23 Consolidated Appropriations Act- Appropriated funding needs for addressing Barriers to affordable housing


Content current as of May 8, 2024.