Facts and Figures
The Homeless Problem in Northern Virginia
Driven by a downturn in the economy and a lack of affordable housing, the demand for homeless services in Northern Virginia has remained high for the past several years. Since 1998 homelessness has increased in Fairfax County by 17%. Families have been particularly hard hit; the number of homeless families is increasing at a faster rate than any other segment of the homeless population.
Fairfax County has three family shelters that can accommodate 35 families and one that can accommodate 21 families. At any given time about 60 homeless families are on shelter waiting lists; it takes an average of three months to get into a shelter.
Fairfax County has a shortage of affordable housing. The average monthly rent for a two bedroom now tops over $1,200;a family would have to earn about $60,000 annually for the apartment to be considered affordable. Most of the homeless families in Fairfax County are employed however the earnings of the working poor do not cover money for housing, utilities, food, medicine and other basic living costs.
Of Homestretch Clients:
- 100% fall below low-income levels established by the Us Department of Housing and Urban Development
- 75% are headed by a single parent
- 45% are from immigrant or refugee families
- 67% are children under the age of 18
- 38% are Black, 30% are white, 28% are Hispanic and 4% are Asian