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Posts: 18


These documents and this posting are a draft and their purpose is to gather information. Therefore, the information is subject to change and does not commit or in any way bind the Department or its Governing Board.

Any final version will go through all normal rulemaking channels.

Introduction to Rent Burden Tie-Breaker

At the QAP Roundtable on May 23, 2018, staff proposed possible tie breaker factors for 10 TAC 11.7. One of these proposed tie-breaker factors is as follows:

“Applications proposed to be located in a census tract with the highest rent burden as compared to another Application with the same score.”

If the Department were to employ rent burden as a tie breaker factor, the Department could use the Comprehensive Housing Affordability Strategy (“CHAS”) dataset, published annually by HUD, since it allows staff to identify renters who make 80% Area Median Family Income (“AMFI”) and it specifies the percentage of their rent that goes to housing costs. The current dataset is 2010-2014 data, but the 2011-2015 data should be released soon.

If this data were used as a tie breaker factor, it would probably need to be combined with another factor that accounts for the poverty rates of census tracts.

The data for every census tract in Texas is attached below. Staff has also identified the top 20 census tracts for regions 3 (urban), 6 (urban), 7 (urban), and 11 (urban), as an example of where this tie-breaker incents Developments.

The handout pertaining to tie-breaker factors from the May 23, 2018 roundtable is also attached below.


Technical Details of Data Attachment


The raw data is located in columns A through Column O.

CHAS refers to rent burden as “housing cost burden,” or “HCB.” CHAS places these households within one of two brackets:


Bracket One

  • those that have more than 30% HCB but less than 50% HCB

Bracket Two

  • those that have more than 50% HCB, which is often referred to as “Severe Housing Cost Burden.”

CHAS further defines this data by placing households within one of three AMFI groups:

  1. those that earn less than or equal to 30% AMFI;

  2. those that earn greater than 30% but less than or equal to 50% AMFI, and

  3. those that earn greater than 50% but less than or equal to 80% AMFI.

This data is showcased in columns J through O of the excel sheet. The total number of renter households in each census track per the 2010-2014 CHAS data, including those renter households who are not rent burdened and/or who have incomes greater than 80% AMFI, has been included in column I. The TDHCA state service region has been added for each census tract in column H.

Staff has added calculations to columns P, Q, and R in the excel sheet.

Column P counts the total population of renter households who earn less than 80% AMFI and whose housing expenditures exceed 30% of their income.

Column Q calculates that census tracts’ share of the entire HCB population of renters who earn less than 80% AMFI. This figure is expressed as a percentage.

Column R ranks all of the census tracts, with rank “1” being the census tract with the highest share of the above demographic pool and rank “5088” being the census tract(s) with the lowest share of the above demographic pool.

Potential issues to consider include tracts with large student populations that may skew income statistics and also census tracts that tie each other in rank for the share of statewide HCB renters. Ties may not be an issue for several reasons, including that census tracts that tie each other may not be in the same subregion and, second, another tie breaker would then come into play if they were in the same subregion.

You can read more about HUD’s CHAS database, and access the raw data, here: https://www.huduser.gov/portal/datasets/cp.html.

Attached Files
xls CHAS_Texas_80_AMFI_HCB_CensusTracts_2010-2014.xls (1.79 MB, 20 views)
pdf rentburdenReg3.pdf (4.12 MB, 16 views)
pdf rentburdenReg6.pdf (3.15 MB, 11 views)
pdf rentburdenReg7.pdf (1.28 MB, 11 views)
pdf rentburdenReg11.pdf (717.96 KB, 7 views)
pdf Handout.pdf (915.02 KB, 15 views)


Posts: 18
To visualize where these census tracts are, you can use HUDuser's online mapping tool for locating QCTs. Just copy and paste the census tract number from the excel sheet into the search bar.


You can also use the CDP mapping tool from HUD to get an idea of where housing cost burden ("HCB") is most prevalent in Texas' census tracts. This tool does not filter for households at or below 80% AMFI, but it does closely align with the data we have provided (which only shows cost burden for households at or below that income threshold). To showcase that data, click 'layers' --> 'Community Indicators' --> 'Housing Need' --> 'Affordability' --> 'Housing Cost Burden', and then zoom to various jurisdictions.


Posts: 4
I appreciate the objectivity of this criterion and its consistency with the Statute. The QAP language can simply reference the formula that creates Column Q. I don't see needing to layer any other poverty information with it because high poverty is already addressed in the existing undesirable neighborhood characteristic requirements and the UNCR.

Posts: 1
Many of the top scoring census tracts have poverty over 20% and could still get done as revitalization deals. My concern is that this tie breaker incentives too much revitalization deals in really urban areas. I do not think any more incentive for really urban deals needs to be in the QAP as there is more than sufficient point advantage for those already. I would like to see 1st quartile sites beat 2nd quartile and 2nd quartile beat 3rd as a tie breaker.  That would create an incentive for development in the best census tracts.   
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