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The Philadelphia Housing Crisis

Like many other cities across the United States, Philadelphia is experiencing a housing crisis in which a substantial percentage of residents struggle to find and secure affordable homes. While housing constraints are felt citywide, low income communities of color have been most severely impacted.

This guide brings together resources related to the housing crisis in Philadelphia, including news and current awareness, white papers and other empirical research, and recent works that explore urban housing crises more generally. We have also included links to government and private non-profit organizations working to address Philadelphians' housing needs.

Legal Developments

2019 Amendments to Philadelphia Code, chapter 9-800, providing access to free legal representation for residents facing eviction in Landlord Tenant Court, subject to certain terms and conditions. 

CDC, Interim Guidance on Unsheltered Homelessness and Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) for Homeless Service Providers and Local Officials, https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/homeless-shelters/unsheltered-homelessness.html  

This amendment was covered by the Regulatory Review in Jan. 2020: https://www.theregreview.org/2020/01/22/whillans-philadelphia-passes-renters-right-counsel/ 

The Renters' Access Act is now codified in Section 9 of the Philadelphia Code. The City's guidelines for tenant screening are available here: https://www.phila.gov/documents/renters-access-act-tenant-screening-guidelines/