Odds You’ll Score an Affordable Apartment Through a City Lottery Are 1,000 to 1

Posted On Fri, May 13, 2016 By

Posted On Fri, May 13, 2016 By In affordable housing, real estate trends

Last August 6sqft reported that about 696 applicants were applying for each of the city’s available affordable housing units, and those odds have gotten even longer. So far this year 2.54 million applicants have applied via the city’s Housing Connect website for 2,628 affordable apartments, which puts the odds at about 1,000 to 1. The number of hopefuls vying for units like the 181 well-below-market rate apartments–from $559/month studios to $3,012 two-bedrooms–available at Pacific Park’s 461 Dean Street has increased dramatically since 2013, when 364,000 applicants applied for around 2,300 units, reports the New York Post.


6sqft’s map of ongoing housing lotteries.

Chances start to sound a little better when you figure in the fact that that number includes people who don’t meet the lottery’s income guidelines; the city is updating the process to weed out those ineligible applicants. Units reserved for prioritized groups like seniors, formerly homeless applicants and those eligible for supportive housing are already excluded from the main lottery.

Though your odds of getting struck by lighting this year are far worse at 1 in 960,000 (and your shot at winning the Powerball jackpot is about 1 in 292,201,338), the sheer number of applicants compared to available homes puts the severity of a growing affordable housing crunch into sharp focus.

Lead image: Photo of the construction progress at 461 Dean Street in January, via Field Condition.

[Via NYPost]

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