Social & Education Policy

Document Type

Technical Report

Publication Date





This report discusses trends of housing affordability in all 99 Iowa counties from 1990 to 2010. The cost-burden and extreme cost-burden are prevalent and enduring problems in Iowa. Counties with universities experience the highest cost-burden levels in the state due to skewed student rental housing markets. More populous counties with large metropolitan areas tend to be more cost-burdened and extremely cost-burdened than rural counties with a few exception. Iowa’s cost-burden and extreme cost-burden are lower than the United States’ total cost-burden and extreme cost-burden but are still cause for concern. Policies directed towards improving housing affordability can help to lower cost-burden and subsequently improve the standard of living in Iowa.

The results of the report clearly show that there trends to be decreases in housing cost-burden over the years from 1990 to 2000 and there were difficult economic times for Iowans from 2000 to 2010. Housing cost-burden of Iowa counties dramatically increased during the years from the 2000 to 2010. The results of this report help to illustrate how the measurement of housing cost-burden is a reflection of economic factors, due to how it is calculated based on the economic factors of income and housing affordability.


Affordable housing, Housing, Iowa

Total Pages

79 pages, 5 figures, 20 tables, 18 maps


At head of title: Policy report.


Copyright © 2015 the authors

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