U.S. rental housing markets are diverse, decentralized, and financially stressed
The U.S. rental housing market is large and diverse, serving 44 million households in all parts of the country. Renter households are younger, less affluent, and more racially diverse than homeowner households. Historically, U.S. housing policies have substantially favored homeowners over renters, both through federal tax policies and local land use regulations. The COVID-19 pandemic and economic crisis have exposed the limited policy protections for renters—notably, the lack of financial support for low-income households and a patchwork of state and local legal protections.