The Need

Did you know that half of renters in the St. Louis region are cost burdened?1

Cost burdened means that they spend a disproportionate amount of their income on rent, leaving little left over for child care, medical needs, and education. Statistics show that more than half of all rental units in the St. Louis region are occupied by people who pay more than 30% of their income toward rent. A significant number of households are in even more dire situations, paying more than 50% of their earnings towards housing costs. (Statistics courtesy of Often they may live in overcrowded, unsafe, and unhealthy conditions. 

In addition, St. Louis City has one of the highest percentages of children living in poverty. Four out of every ten children in St. Louis live at or below the poverty line.2  Furthermore, in Missouri, to afford a two-bedroom apartment on minimum wage, an employee would have to work 76 hours per week, 52 weeks of the year.3

It's no wonder that we receive 5,000 calls a year from people interested in homewonership! 

Why does it matter?

When people spend too much of their income on housing, it hurts the future of our community. Not only is the economy weakened, but it leaves the future of children in St. Louis City and County uncertain. 

Through safe and affordable housing purchased through Habitat for Humanity Saint Louis, we can transform a community, strengthen the local economy, and ensure future generations have the opportunities they deserve. 

Clean, decent, and stable housing provides more than just a roof over someone's head. Statistics below (gathered in a study titled "Impact of Homeownership and Affiliate Experiences" by Elissa Baker et all) show how a stable home often becomes a catalyst for other successes and benefits for homeowners and their families.

97%  Report an improvement in their family's quality of life.
92%  Report feeling better about themselves since becoming a homeowner.
74%  See an improvement in their family's overall health.
57%  Choose to further their education.
53%  Experience improved job opportunities.

Additional benefits of homeownership include: 

  • A homeowner lives in a community four times longer than a renter.4
  • Homeowners are 15% more likely to vote.4
  • Children of homeowners are not only more likely to succeed socially but also academically – they are 25% more likely to graduate high school and 116% more likely to graduate from college.4
  • Children of homeowners are also more likely to become homeowners themselves one day.4
  • Children of homeowners are 20% less likely to become teen moms.4
  • Families report better health when they move into a stable home of their own.5
  • HFHSL homes are energy efficient and therefore, more affordable. 
  • Increasing homeownership in a neighborhood, increases the value of homes in the area.6
  • By increasing homeownership in a community, the local economy is benefited through additional tax revenue and consumer spending.7

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