DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — A new study by the Ohio Housing Finance Agency shows that around one million people statewide are at risk of losing their place to live.
That number comes after losing 15 thousand affordable homes across the state, leaving many Ohioans struggling to keep a roof over their heads.
They say it means that about 70 percent of low-income individuals and families in the state are shockingly close to living on the streets.
“Living to paycheck to paycheck is not even accurate,” Amy Riegel, the executive director of the Coalition on Homelessness and Housing in Ohio, said. “It’s more you’re living just in hopes that there’s not one little blip.”
Riegel said children and people previously in foster care are very likely to be on the brink of homelessness.
“When you’re paying more than 50 percent of your income and you’re not earning a lot, that means that you do not have any extra income for in some cases, food, but also any emergency that would come up during the month.”
In addition, resources for housing assistance can be scarce.
The Ohio budget allocated just 4,000 homes to be created over the course of 4 years with the state tax credit after losing 15,000 last year.
Even though housing may not be readily available, there are other resources available through Montgomery County Job and Family Services to help take the stress off other areas.
“A household who’s receiving SNAP assistance, they can use their SNAP assistance to primarily take care of their food budget for their household,” Makell Baccus, social program manager for Montgomery County Job and Family Services, said.
“That could potentially open up income to move towards other necessary things in the household, such as shelter or utilities or clothing assistance, those other types of assistance.”
3,500 people around the county have access to cash assistance, which also helps with career readiness, but as individuals grow and increase their income, officials say that more ways to create house is the ultimate solution.
“It is important that every community thinks about how they can add more housing and diverse housing to their communities so that they can thrive and prosper,” Riegel added.
A list of links to services provided in Montgomery County can be found below: