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U.S. Not Able To Ensure Housing For Seniors

The study reveals that the U.S. is not prepared to ensure housing and care for older people. 


December 5, 2023

Michael Genaldi became homeless when a car slammed into his motorcycle, crushed three ribs, and left him in a coma for a month. 

Genaldi lost his job, home and was living in a truck when diagnosed with stage 2 lung cancer. Genaldi now lives in a shelter for people aged 55 in Phoenix while navigating the process of qualifying for disability payments. 

The United States population continues to age but the United States is still ill-prepared to provide the much-needed housing and care for older people. The Project Director of the Aging Society Program revealed that without the government’s help, seniors have to forget about care and rely on family and friends to care for them. 

The government assistance will better help the Americans who are baby boomers born after World War II. 

The report highlights that in 2021, federal housing assistance programs like Section 8 and Section 202, which offer housing support and services for older individuals, were only able to accommodate a little over a third of the eligible 5.9 million renters aged 62 and older. 

Given this shortfall, the report emphasizes the need for creative housing solutions for seniors with limited incomes and savings. These solutions include options like shared housing arrangements, accessory dwelling units (ADUs) such as casitas and granny flats, and cohousing communities where individual homes are clustered around a communal space. 

These approaches aim to reduce housing costs and provide more affordable and communal living alternatives for seniors.

The U.S. Population over the age of 75 will increase by 45% over the next decade which means that many people are expected to struggle financially. Nearly 11.2 Million seniors were cost burdened in 2021 meaning that they spend 30% of their income on housing. 

Moreover, many seniors find it challenging to obtain the additional services they need with age. Compared to married couples, older people who live alone are more likely to be cost-burdened. 

The CEO of Central Arizona Shelter Services, Lisa Glow says that older people can do much better in a shelter designed with their needs in mind such as having more space, wider doorways for wheelchairs, and limited stairs. 

Glow said, “The downtown shelter is not a good place for an aging adult with chronic conditions. We see a lot of people there in their 70s and 80s. I’ve been shocked to see so many seniors on the street. People with wheelchairs. People with walkers.”

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The content provided in this article draws inspiration and includes quotes from various reputable sources, including news articles, government data, and interviews. Affordable Housing 411 strives to ensure accuracy and credibility, but the information presented may be based on some external sources. We encourage readers to refer to the referenced materials for more in-depth insights and verification.


Snow Anita. “Study says US ill-prepared to ensure housing for the growing number of older people”. ABC news, November 30, 2023, 

Study says US ill-prepared to ensure housing for the growing number of older people – ABC News (

Last Updated: September 20, 2021