Zillow: Housing Deficit Continues to Grow

(Image courtesy of Zillow)

Zillow, Seattle, released an analysis revealing the U.S. housing shortage grew to 4.5 million homes in 2022, up from 4.3 million in 2021.

In 2022, 1.4 million homes were built, which was the highest level of construction since the Great Recession era. But, the number of U.S. families increased by 1.8 million.

While Zillow noted there were 1.45 million homes completed in 2023, that still is unlikely to be enough given the size of the deficit.

In 2022, there were about 3.55 million vacant homes for sale or rent, but about 8.09 million individuals or families living with non-relatives, which Zillow defines as “missing homes.”

“The simple fact is there are not enough homes in this country, and that’s pushing homeownership out of reach for too many families,” said Orphe Divounguy, Senior Economist at Zillow. “The affordability crisis extends to renters as well, with nearly half of renter households being cost burdened. Filling the housing shortage is the long-term answer to making housing more affordable. We are in a big hole, and it is going to take more than the status quo to dig ourselves out of it.”

The areas seeing the worst housing shortages were Boston, Sacramento, Calif., Portland, Ore., San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, Calif., Seattle, Minneapolis, Los Angeles, and Austin, Texas.

Zillow noted that one big challenge is the way zoning dictates building in many areas of the country. Other efforts that could be helpful in the push to build and provide more housing are eliminating or reducing parking requirements, minimizing building permit approval delays and establishing and expanding affordable housing trust funds, the firm said.