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Cityscape: Volume 14 Number 1 | Chapter 4


American Housing Survey

Volume 14 Number 1

Mark D. Shroder
Michelle P. Matuga

Exploring Housing Challenges of Low-Income Minority Populations in the Southern United States

Sung-jin Lee , North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University
Kathleen R. Parrott , Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Mira Ahn , Texas State University—San Marcos

As with the articles in this issue, this introduction reflects the views of the authors and does not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.


This study examined the housing challenges of low-income minority populations living in the Southern United States (the South), focusing on demographic and housing characteristics, and using data from the 2009 American Housing Survey. When investigating housing challenges, housing adequacy was considered to be a representative term and was used as the dependent variable. This article presents a detailed profile of the demographic and housing characteristics of the sample of 2,304 householders. Bivariate analysis, with the housing adequacy variable, showed that people who were older, had less family income, were native born, had less than a high school education, lived in rural and suburban areas, and were less satisfied with their neighborhood were more likely to live in inadequate housing. Living in inadequate housing was more likely to be associated with single-family housing and less likely to be associated with renting for cash. A model was developed that hypothesized a relationship between demographic and housing characteristics and the respondents’ housing adequacy levels. The model was supported by the rejection of the null hypothesis, and family income, geographic location, housing subsidies, neighborhood rating, structure size, and structure type were found to be significant variables. This article highlights both affordability and quality issues regarding housing for low-income minority populations in the South and topics that are of interest to both researchers and policymakers.

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