Community Need

Arlington County is one of the wealthiest, best-educated communities in the United States. It’s a desirable place to live, but it’s also one of the most expensive.

From 2000 to 2016, Arlington County lost 14,000 affordable housing units. And today, more than 7,500 low-income families and individuals in Arlington do not have access to homes they can afford.

But housing security is critical for low-income families and individuals to thrive. And, ensuring that Arlington provides adequate options and opportunities for these families and individuals is a valued characteristic of Arlington County.

In the fall of 2015, the Affordable Housing Master Plan was adopted by Arlington County, which recognizes that housing affordability is vital to the social and economic sustainability of our community.

In fact, the values that are central to the County’s vision –diversity, inclusivity, sustainability– are supported by providing a range of housing affordability. Over the next 25 years, the plan’s goal is to double Arlington’s affordable housing.


“For our county, the most pressing moral issue is affordable housing. If we really believe in a diverse and inclusive community, we must act and act now.”

-Jay Fisette, Chair, Arlington County Board

But the need is bigger than Arlington. Our whole community is experiencing the same dramatic loss of affordable rental homes and apartments:

  • Alexandria City reports losing 90% of their market rate affordable housing.
  • Washington, DC lost 34,000 affordable rental homes between just 2005 and 2013.
  • In metro DC, more than 150,000 households pay over 50% of their income on rent.